G2Cdb::Gene report

Gene id
Gene symbol
Homo sapiens
mitochondrially encoded cytochrome c oxidase II
G00001047 (Mus musculus)

Databases (7)

ENSG00000198712 (Ensembl human gene)
4513 (Entrez Gene)
830 (G2Cdb plasticity & disease)
MT-CO2 (GeneCards)
516040 (OMIM)
Marker Symbol
HGNC:7421 (HGNC)
Protein Sequence
P00403 (UniProt)

Synonyms (2)

  • CO2
  • COX2

Literature (86)

Pubmed - other

  • Epidermal growth factor receptor translocation to the mitochondria: regulation and effect.

    Demory ML, Boerner JL, Davidson R, Faust W, Miyake T, Lee I, Hüttemann M, Douglas R, Haddad G and Parsons SJ

    Department of Microbiology and the Cancer Center, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia 22908, USA.

    Co-overexpression of the epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor (EGFR) and c-Src frequently occurs in human tumors and is linked to enhanced tumor growth. In experimental systems this synergistic growth requires EGF-dependent association of c-Src with the EGFR and phosphorylation of Tyr-845 of the receptor by c-Src. A search for signaling mediators of Tyr(P)-845 revealed that mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit II (CoxII) binds EGFR in a Tyr(P)-845- and EGF-dependent manner. In cells this association involves translocation of EGFR to the mitochondria, but regulation of this process is ill-defined. The current study demonstrates that c-Src translocates to the mitochondria with similar kinetics as EGFR and that the catalytic activity of EGFR and c-Src as well as endocytosis and a mitochondrial localization signal are required for these events. CoxII can be phosphorylated by EGFR and c-Src, and EGF stimulation reduces Cox activity and cellular ATP, an event that is dependent in large part on EGFR localized to the mitochondria. These findings suggest EGFR plays a novel role in modulating mitochondrial function via its association with, and modification of CoxII.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA123037, CA71449, R01 CA071449, R01 CA123037; NICHD NIH HHS: P01 HD 32473

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2009;284;52;36592-604

  • MtSNPscore: a combined evidence approach for assessing cumulative impact of mitochondrial variations in disease.

    Bhardwaj A, Mukerji M, Sharma S, Paul J, Gokhale CS, Srivastava AK and Tiwari S

    Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, CSIR, Delhi, India. anshu@igib.res.in

    Background: Human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variations have been implicated in a broad spectrum of diseases. With over 3000 mtDNA variations reported across databases, establishing pathogenicity of variations in mtDNA is a major challenge. We have designed and developed a comprehensive weighted scoring system (MtSNPscore) for identification of mtDNA variations that can impact pathogenicity and would likely be associated with disease. The criteria for pathogenicity include information available in the literature, predictions made by various in silico tools and frequency of variation in normal and patient datasets. The scoring scheme also assigns scores to patients and normal individuals to estimate the cumulative impact of variations. The method has been implemented in an automated pipeline and has been tested on Indian ataxia dataset (92 individuals), sequenced in this study, and other publicly available mtSNP dataset comprising of 576 mitochondrial genomes of Japanese individuals from six different groups, namely, patients with Parkinson's disease, patients with Alzheimer's disease, young obese males, young non-obese males, and type-2 diabetes patients with or without severe vascular involvement. MtSNPscore, for analysis can extract information from variation data or from mitochondrial DNA sequences. It has a web-interface http://bioinformatics.ccmb.res.in/cgi-bin/snpscore/Mtsnpscore.pl that provides flexibility to update/modify the parameters for estimating pathogenicity.

    Results: Analysis of ataxia and mtSNP data suggests that rare variants comprise the largest part of disease associated variations. MtSNPscore predicted possible role of eight and 79 novel variations in ataxia and mtSNP datasets, respectively, in disease etiology. Analysis of cumulative scores of patient and normal data resulted in Matthews Correlation Coefficient (MCC) of ~0.5 and accuracy of ~0.7 suggesting that the method may also predict involvement of mtDNA variation in diseases.

    Conclusion: We have developed a novel and comprehensive method for evaluation of mitochondrial variation and their involvement in disease. Our method has the most comprehensive set of parameters to assess mtDNA variations and overcomes the undesired bias generated as a result of better-studied diseases and genes. These variations can be prioritized for functional assays to confirm their pathogenic status.

    BMC bioinformatics 2009;10 Suppl 8;S7

  • Human SCO2 is required for the synthesis of CO II and as a thiol-disulphide oxidoreductase for SCO1.

    Leary SC, Sasarman F, Nishimura T and Shoubridge EA

    Montreal Neurological Institute, McGill University, 3801 University Street, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3A 2B4.

    Human SCO1 and SCO2 code for essential metallochaperones with ill-defined functions in the biogenesis of the CuA site of cytochrome c oxidase subunit II (CO II). Here, we have used patient cell lines to investigate the specific roles of each SCO protein in this pathway. By pulse-labeling mitochondrial translation products, we demonstrate that the synthesis of CO II is reduced in SCO2, but not in SCO1, cells. Despite this biosynthetic defect, newly synthesized CO II is more stable in SCO2 cells than in control cells. RNAi-mediated knockdown of mutant SCO2 abolishes CO II labeling in the translation assay, whereas knockdown of mutant SCO1 does not affect CO II synthesis. These results indicate that SCO2 acts upstream of SCO1, and that it is indispensable for CO II synthesis. The subsequent maturation of CO II is contingent upon the formation of a complex that includes both SCO proteins, each with a functional CxxxC copper-coordinating motif. In control cells, the cysteines in this motif in SCO1 exist as a mixed population comprised of oxidized disulphides and reduced thiols; however, the relative ratio of oxidized to reduced cysteines in SCO1 is perturbed in cells from both SCO backgrounds. Overexpression of wild-type SCO2, or knockdown of mutant SCO2, in SCO2 cells alters the ratio of oxidized to reduced cysteines in SCO1, suggesting that SCO2 acts as a thiol-disulphide oxidoreductase to oxidize the copper-coordinating cysteines in SCO1 during CO II maturation. Based on these data we present a model in which each SCO protein fulfills distinct, stage-specific functions during CO II synthesis and CuA site maturation.

    Funded by: Howard Hughes Medical Institute

    Human molecular genetics 2009;18;12;2230-40

  • MiR-101 downregulation is involved in cyclooxygenase-2 overexpression in human colon cancer cells.

    Strillacci A, Griffoni C, Sansone P, Paterini P, Piazzi G, Lazzarini G, Spisni E, Pantaleo MA, Biasco G and Tomasi V

    Department of Experimental Biology, University of Bologna, via Selmi 3, 40126 Bologna, Italy. antonio.strillacci@unibo.it

    Overexpressed cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) strongly contributes to the growth and invasiveness of tumoral cells in patients affected by colorectal cancer (CRC). It has been demonstrated that COX-2 overexpression depends on different cellular pathways involving both transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulations. We assumed that COX-2 expression could be regulated also by microRNAs (miRNAs) since these short RNA molecules participate to the fine regulation of several genes implicated in cell growth and differentiation. In this paper, we report the inverse correlation between COX-2 and miR-101 expression in colon cancer cell lines and we demonstrated in vitro the direct inhibition of COX-2 mRNA translation mediated by miR-101. Moreover, this correlation was supported by data collected ex vivo, in which colon cancer tissues and liver metastases derived from CRC patients were analyzed. These findings provide a novel molecular insight in the modulation of COX-2 at post-transcriptional level by miR-101 and strengthen the observation that miRNAs are highly implicated in the control of gene expression. An impairment of miR-101 levels could represent one of the leading causes of COX-2 overexpression in colon cancer cells.

    Experimental cell research 2009;315;8;1439-47

  • Loss of function of Sco1 and its interaction with cytochrome c oxidase.

    Stiburek L, Vesela K, Hansikova H, Hulkova H and Zeman J

    Charles University, Prague 128 08, Czech Republic.

    Sco1 and Sco2 are mitochondrial copper-binding proteins involved in the biogenesis of the Cu(A) site in the cytochrome c oxidase (CcO) subunit Cox2 and in the maintenance of cellular copper homeostasis. Human Surf1 is a CcO assembly factor with an important but poorly characterized role in CcO biogenesis. Here, we analyzed the impact on CcO assembly and tissue copper levels of a G132S mutation in the juxtamembrane region of SCO1 metallochaperone associated with early onset hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, encephalopathy, hypotonia, and hepatopathy, assessed the total copper content of various SURF1 and SCO2-deficient tissues, and investigated the possible physical association between CcO and Sco1. The steady-state level of mutant Sco1 was severely decreased in the muscle mitochondria of the SCO1 patient, indicating compromised stability and thus loss of function of the protein. Unlike the wild-type variant, residual mutant Sco1 appeared to migrate exclusively in the monomeric form on blue native gels. Both the activity and content of CcO were reduced in the patient's muscle to approximately 10-20% of control values. SCO1-deficient mitochondria showed accumulation of two Cox2 subcomplexes, suggesting that Sco1 is very likely responsible for a different posttranslational aspect of Cox2 maturation than Sco2. Intriguingly, the various SURF1-deficient samples analyzed showed a tissue-specific copper deficiency similar to that of SCO-deficient samples, suggesting a role for Surf1 in copper homeostasis regulation. Finally, both blue native immunoblot analysis and coimmunoprecipitation revealed that a fraction of Sco1 physically associates with the CcO complex in human muscle mitochondria, suggesting a possible direct relationship between CcO and the regulation of cellular copper homeostasis.

    American journal of physiology. Cell physiology 2009;296;5;C1218-26

  • Mitochondrial tRNALeu/Lys and ATPase 6/8 gene variations in spinocerebellar ataxias.

    Safaei S, Houshmand M, Banoei MM, Panahi MS, Nafisi S, Parivar K, Rostami M and Shariati P

    Research and Sciences Campus, Azad University, Tehran, Iran.

    Background: The spinocerebellar ataxias (SCA) comprise a heterogeneous group of severe late-onset neurodegenerative diseases that are promoted by the expansion of a tandem-arrayed DNA sequence that modifies the primary structure of the protein.

    Methods: Genomic DNA of 20 patients affected with SCAs was extracted from peripheral blood and screened for deletions in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). Sequencing of tRNA(Leu), tRNA(Lys), cytochrome oxidase II, ATPase 6/8 and NADH dehydrogenase I (NDI) genes belonging to mtDNA from patients with SCAs was also carried out to detect the presence of variations.

    Results: We identified cytosine-adenine-guanine (CAG) trinucleotide repeat expansions in 20 patients. Seven of these patients had at least one nucleotide change in mtDNA. In such cases, 5 nucleotide variations resulted in amino acid changes with two novel variations T8256G and G9010A.

    Conclusion: SCA patients showed high levels of mtDNA variations in lymphocytes. It can be proposed that the SCA gene proteins (Ataxins) are involved in the complicated intracellular mechanisms that affect cellular organelles and their components, such as the mitochondrial genome. The instability of CAG repeats in polyglutamine diseases such as SCAs and Huntington's disease might be a causative factor in mtDNA variation or possible damage.

    Neuro-degenerative diseases 2009;6;1-2;16-22

  • Comprehensive analysis of common mitochondrial DNA variants and colorectal cancer risk.

    Webb E, Broderick P, Chandler I, Lubbe S, Penegar S, Tomlinson IP and Houlston RS

    Section of Cancer Genetics, Institute of Cancer Research, Sutton, Surrey SM2 5NG, UK.

    Several lines of evidence implicate mitochondrial dysfunction in the development of cancer. To test the hypothesis that common mtDNA variation influences the risk of colorectal cancer (CRC), we genotyped 132 tagging mtDNA variants in a sample of 2854 CRC cases and 2822 controls. The variants examined capture approximately 80% of mtDNA common variation (excluding the hypervariable D-loop). We first tested for single marker associations; the strongest association detected was with A5657G (P=0.06). Overall the distribution of association P-values was consistent with a null distribution. Next, we classified individuals into the nine common European haplogroups and compared their distribution in cases and controls. This analysis also provided no evidence of an association between mitochondrial variation and CRC risk. In conclusion, our results provide little evidence that mitochondrial genetic background plays a role in modifying an individual's risk of developing CRC.

    Funded by: Cancer Research UK

    British journal of cancer 2008;99;12;2088-93

  • Altered expression of 12S/MT-RNR1, MT-CO2/COX2, and MT-ATP6 mitochondrial genes in prostate cancer.

    Abril J, de Heredia ML, González L, Clèries R, Nadal M, Condom E, Aguiló F, Gómez-Zaera M and Nunes V

    Centre de Genètica Mèdica i Molecular-IDIBELL, Hospital Duran i Reynals, L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain.

    Background: Prostate cancer is one of the commonest cancers worldwide and is responsible for nearly 6% of all male cancer deaths. Despite this relevance, the mechanisms involved in the development and progression of this malignancy remain unknown. The involvement of polypeptides of the mitochondrial respiratory chain, the Krebs cycle and the glutathione antioxidant system in this type of cancer has been previously described, although no publication has focused on the expression of mitochondrial genes in the prostate of PCa patients.

    Methods: We have determined by reverse transcription-quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) the relative amount of the transcripts of eight mitochondrial genes (MT-ND2, MT-ND4, MT-ND6, MT-CYB, 12S/MT-RNR1, 16S/MT-RNR2, MT-CO2/COX2, MT-ATP6), and four nuclear genes (COX11, GSR, CS, ACO2), all of them key players in the normal metabolism of mitochondria. Additionally we analyzed the expression of Cyclophilin A (PPIA).

    Results: We observed differential expression of mitochondrial 12S/MT-RNR1, MT-CO2/COX2, and MT-ATP6 transcripts in tumor samples when compared to their paired normal samples.

    Conclusions: The amount of mitochondrial 12S/MT-RNR1, MT-CO2/COX2, and MT-ATP6 transcripts is significantly decreased in tumor samples when compared to their paired normal sample, suggesting that mitochondrial gene expression is altered in PCa.

    The Prostate 2008;68;10;1086-96

  • Predictive biomarkers of chemotherapy efficacy in colorectal cancer: results from the UK MRC FOCUS trial.

    Braun MS, Richman SD, Quirke P, Daly C, Adlard JW, Elliott F, Barrett JH, Selby P, Meade AM, Stephens RJ, Parmar MK and Seymour MT

    Leeds Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom.

    Purpose: Candidate predictive biomarkers for irinotecan and oxaliplatin were assessed in 1,628 patients in Fluorouracil, Oxaliplatin, CPT-11: Use and Sequencing (FOCUS), a large randomized trial of fluorouracil alone compared with fluorouracil and irinotecan and compared with fluorouracil and oxaliplatin in advanced colorectal cancer.

    Methods: The candidate biomarkers were: tumor immunohistochemistry for MLH1/MSH2, p53, topoisomerase-1 (Topo1), excision repair cross-complementing gene 1 (ERCC1), O-6-methylguanine-DNA-methyltranserase (MGMT), and cyclooxygenase 2 (COX2); germline DNA polymorphisms in GSTP1, ABCB1, XRCC1, ERCC2, and UGT1A1. These were screened in more than 750 patients for interaction with benefit from irinotecan or oxaliplatin; two markers (Topo1 and MLH1/MSH2) met criteria to be taken forward for analysis in the full population. Primary end points were progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival.

    Results: One thousand three hundred thirteen patients (81%) were assessable for Topo1 immunohistochemistry (low, < 10%; moderate, 10% to 50%; or high, > 50% tumor nuclei). In patients with low Topo1, PFS was not improved by the addition of either irinotecan (hazard ratio [HR], 0.98; 95% CI, 0.78 to 1.22) or oxaliplatin (HR, 0.85; 95% CI, 0.68 to 1.07); conversely, patients with moderate/high Topo1 benefited from the addition of either drug (HR, 0.48 to 0.70 in all categories; interaction P = .005; overall, P = .001 for irinotecan; P = .05 for oxaliplatin). High Topo1 was associated with a major overall survival benefit with first-line combination chemotherapy (HR, 0.60; median benefit, 5.3 months); patients with moderate or low Topo1 did not benefit (HR, 0.92 and 1.09, respectively; interaction P = .005). MLH1/MSH2 did not show significant interaction with treatment, although the low rate of loss (4.4%) limits the power of the study for this biomarker.

    Conclusion: Topo1 immunohistochemistry identified subpopulations that did or did not benefit from irinotecan, and possibly also from oxaliplatin. If verified independently, this information will contribute to the individualization of treatment for colorectal cancer.

    Funded by: Cancer Research UK; Medical Research Council: MC_U122861325

    Journal of clinical oncology : official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology 2008;26;16;2690-8

  • Lysophosphatidic acid-induced transactivation of epidermal growth factor receptor regulates cyclo-oxygenase-2 expression and prostaglandin E(2) release via C/EBPbeta in human bronchial epithelial cells.

    He D, Natarajan V, Stern R, Gorshkova IA, Solway J, Spannhake EW and Zhao Y

    The Section of Pulmonary and Critical Care, Department of Medicine, Center for Integrative Science Building, 929 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637, USA.

    We have demonstrated that LPA (lysophosphatidic acid)-induced IL (interleukin)-8 secretion was partly mediated via transactivation of EGFR [EGF (epidermal growth factor) receptor] in HBEpCs (human bronchial epithelial primary cells). The present study provides evidence that LPA-induced transactivation of EGFR regulates COX (cyclo-oxygenase)-2 expression and PGE(2) [PG (prostaglandin) E(2)] release through the transcriptional factor, C/EBPbeta (CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein beta), in HBEpCs. Treatment with LPA (1 microM) stimulated COX-2 mRNA and protein expression and PGE(2) release via G(alphai)-coupled LPARs (LPA receptors). Pretreatment with inhibitors of NF-kappaB (nuclear factor-kappaB), JNK (Jun N-terminal kinase), or down-regulation of c-Jun or C/EBPbeta with specific siRNA (small interference RNA) attenuated LPA-induced COX-2 expression. Downregulation of EGFR by siRNA or pretreatment with the EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitor, AG1478, partly attenuated LPA-induced COX-2 expression and phosphorylation of C/EBPbeta; however, neither of these factors had an effect on the NF-kappaB and JNK pathways. Furthermore, LPA-induced EGFR transactivation, phosphorylation of C/EBPbeta and COX-2 expression were attenuated by overexpression of a catalytically inactive mutant of PLD2 [PLD (phospholipase D) 2], PLD2-K758R, or by addition of myristoylated PKCzeta [PKC (protein kinase C) zeta] peptide pseudosubstrate. Overexpression of the PLD2-K758R mutant also attenuated LPA-induced phosphorylation and activation of PKCzeta. These results demonstrate that LPA induces COX-2 expression and PGE(2) production through EGFR transactivation-independent activation of transcriptional factors NF-kappaB and c-Jun, and EGFR transactivation-dependent activation of C/EBPbeta in HBEpCs. Since COX-2 and PGE(2) have been shown to be anti-inflammatory in airway inflammation, the present data suggest a modulating and protective role of LPA in regulating innate immunity and remodelling of the airways.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL71152, HL79396, R01 HL071152, R01 HL071152-02, R01 HL079396, R37 HL079396

    The Biochemical journal 2008;412;1;153-62

  • Human renal 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 1 functions and co-localizes with COX-2.

    Gong R, Morris DJ and Brem AS

    Rhode Island Hospital Division of Kidney Diseases and Hypertension, Brown Medical School, Providence, R.I., United States.

    The local renal metabolism of glucocorticoids (GCs) by isoforms of 11beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11beta-HSD1 and 11beta-HSD2) determines their biological effects. 11beta-HSD2, located in collecting duct epithelial cells of the mammalian and human kidney, serves as a putative "guardian" preventing GCs from binding to mineralocorticoid receptors. Various investigators have shown that both isoforms are present in kidney tissue from the rat, dog and other mammals. There is controversy as to whether 11beta-HSD1 exists and functions in human kidney. The current studies examine the locale and function of both isoforms in human kidney. The expression of 11beta-HSD1 was similar to that of 11beta-HSD2 by Western blot. Two distinct Lineweaver Burke plots could be drawn providing enzyme kinetics for both isoforms. The apparent Km for the NADP dependent 11beta-HSD1 enzyme was 0.42 muM while the apparent Km for the NAD dependent 11beta-HSD2 enzyme was 10.2 nM. Human renal 11beta-HSD1 appears to function as a dehydrogenase with no significant "reverse" reductase activity. Using immuno-histochemistry and Western blot analysis, 11beta-HSD1 was found to co-localize with COX-2 in proximal tubule cells; COX-2 was not seen with 11beta-HSD2 in cortical collecting duct. Thus, normal human kidney contains active 11beta-HSD1 and 11beta-HSD2. 11beta-HSD1 co-localizes with COX-2 in proximal tubule cells.

    Life sciences 2008;82;11-12;631-7

  • Involvement of the p38 MAPK-NF-kappaB signal transduction pathway and COX-2 in the pathobiology of meniscus degeneration in humans.

    Papachristou DJ, Papadakou E, Basdra EK, Baltopoulos P, Panagiotopoulos E and Papavassiliou AG

    Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

    Meniscal tears are attributed to either trauma or degeneration processes. Clinical data suggest that meniscal degeneration (MD) is associated with knee osteoarthritis; however, the molecular events underpinning the pathogenesis of MD in humans remain elusive. Here we immunohistochemically examined the expression of p38 MAPK, its phosphorylated/activated form (p-p38), its target NF-kappaB (p50-p65 dimer), and COX-2 in ruptured menisci and investigated their involvement in MD development. Our findings demonstrate increased expression of the p38-NF-kappaB axis elements and COX-2 in disintegrated fibrocartilage, suggesting a role of these molecules in the pathobiochemistry of MD and consequential rupture.

    Molecular medicine (Cambridge, Mass.) 2008;14;3-4;160-6

  • Cyclooxygenase-2 expression correlates with phaeochromocytoma malignancy: evidence for a Bcl-2-dependent mechanism.

    Cadden IS, Atkinson AB, Johnston BT, Pogue K, Connolly R, McCance D, Ardill JE, Russell CF and McGinty A

    Department of Medicine, Queen's University Belfast, Belfast, UK.

    Aims: Phaeochromocytomas are rare but potentially life-threatening neuroendocrine tumours of the adrenal medulla or sympathetic nervous system ganglia. There are no histological features which reliably differentiate benign from malignant phaeochromocytomas. The aim of the study was to evaluate cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and Bcl-2 as tissue-based biomarkers of phaeochromocytoma prognosis.

    COX-2 and Bcl-2 expression were examined immunohistochemically in tissue from 41 sporadic phaeochromocytoma patients followed up for a minimum of 5 years after diagnosis. There was a statistically significant association between COX-2 histoscore (intensity x proportion) and the development of tumour recurrence or metastases (P = 0.006). A significant relationship was observed between coexpression of COX-2 and Bcl-2 in the primary tumour and the presence of recurrent disease (P = 0.034). A highly significant association was observed between (i) tumour-associated expression of these two oncoproteins (P = 0.001) and (ii) COX-2 histoscore and the presence of Bcl-2 expression (P = 0.002). COX regression analysis demonstrated no significant relationship between (i) the presence or absence of either COX-2 or Bcl-2 and patient survival or (ii) COX-2 histoscore and patient survival.

    Conclusions: COX-2 and Bcl-2 may promote phaeochromocytoma malignancy, and these oncoproteins may be valuable surrogate markers of an aggressive tumour phenotype.

    Histopathology 2007;51;6;743-51

  • Inhibition of p38/CREB phosphorylation and COX-2 expression by olive oil polyphenols underlies their anti-proliferative effects.

    Corona G, Deiana M, Incani A, Vauzour D, Dessì MA and Spencer JP

    Molecular Nutrition Group, School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy, University of Reading, Whiteknights Campus, Reading RG2 6AP, UK.

    We investigated the anti-proliferative effects of an olive oil polyphenolic extract on human colon adenocarcinoma cells. Analysis indicated that the extract contained hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol and the various secoiridoid derivatives, including oleuropein. This extract exerted a strong inhibitory effect on cancer cell proliferation, which was linked to the induction of a G2/M phase cell cycle block. Following treatment with the extract (50 microg/ml) the number of cells in the G2/M phase increased to 51.82+/-2.69% relative to control cells (15.1+/-2.5%). This G2/M block was mediated by the ability of olive oil polyphenols (50 microg/ml) to exert rapid inhibition of p38 (38.7+/-4.7%) and CREB (28.6+/-5.5%) phosphorylation which led to a downstream reduction in COX-2 expression (56.9+/-9.3%). Our data suggest that olive oil polyphenols may exert chemopreventative effects in the large intestine by interacting with signalling pathways responsible for colorectal cancer development.

    Funded by: Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council: BB/C518222/1; Medical Research Council: G0400278

    Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2007;362;3;606-11

  • Investigation on mitochondrial tRNA(Leu/Lys), NDI and ATPase 6/8 in Iranian multiple sclerosis patients.

    Ahari SE, Houshmand M, Panahi MS, Kasraie S, Moin M and Bahar MA

    Sciences and Research Campus, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.

    As with chromosomal DNA, the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) can contain mutations that are highly pathogenic . In fact, many diseases of the central nervous system are known to be caused by mutations in mtDNA. Dysfunction of the mitochondrial Respiratory Chain (RC) has been shown in patients with neurological disease including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD) and Multiple sclerosis (MS). MS is a demyelinating disease of central nervous system characterized by morphological hallmarks of inflammation, demyelination and axonal loss. Considering this importance, we decided to investigate several highly mutative parts of mtDNA for point mutations as MT-LTI (tRNA(Leucine1(UUA/G))), MT-NDI (NADH Dehydrogenase subunit 1), MT-COII (Cytochrome c oxidase subunit II), MT-TK (tRNA(Lysine)), MT-ATP8 (ATP synthase subunit F0 8) and MT-ATP6 (ATP synthase subunit F0 6) in 20 Iranian MS patients and 80 age-matched control subjects by PCR and automated DNA sequencing to evaluate any probable point mutations. Our results revealed that 15 (75%) out of 20 MS patients had point mutations. Some of point mutations were newly found in this study. This study suggested that point mutation occurred in mtDNA might be involved in pathogenesis of MS.

    Cellular and molecular neurobiology 2007;27;6;695-700

  • Aromatase and COX in breast cancer: enzyme inhibitors and beyond.

    Brueggemeier RW, Su B, Sugimoto Y, Díaz-Cruz ES and Davis DD

    Division of Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy, College of Pharmacy, The Ohio State University, 500 West 12th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, USA. Brueggemeier.1@osu.edu

    Aromatase expression and enzyme activity in breast cancer patients is greater in or near the tumor tissue compared with the normal breast tissue. Complex regulation of aromatase expression in human tissues involves alternative promoter sites that provide tissue-specific control. Previous studies in our laboratories suggested a strong association between aromatase (CYP19) gene expression and the expression of cyclooxygenase (COX) genes. Additionally, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and COX selective inhibitors can suppress CYP19 gene expression and decrease aromatase activity. Our current hypothesis is that pharmacological regulation of aromatase and/or cyclooxygenases can act locally to decrease the biosynthesis of estrogen and may provide additional therapy options for patients with hormone-dependent breast cancer. Two pharmacological approaches are being developed, one involving mRNA silencing by selective short interfering RNAs (siRNA) molecules and the second utilizing small molecule drug design. In the first approach, short interfering RNAs were designed against either human aromatase mRNA or human COX-2 mRNA. Treatment of breast cancer cells with siAROMs completely masked the aromatase enzyme activity. Treatment with COX-2 siRNAs decreased the expression of COX-2 mRNA; furthermore, the siCOX-2-mediated decrease also resulted in suppression of CYP19 mRNA. The small molecule drug design approach focuses on the synthesis and biological evaluation of a novel series of sulfonanilide analogs derived from the COX-2 selective inhibitors. The compounds suppress aromatase enzyme activity in SK-BR-3 breast cancer cells in a dose and time-dependent manner, and structure activity analysis does not find a correlation between aromatase suppression and COX inhibition. Real-time PCR analysis demonstrates that the sulfonanilide analogs decrease aromatase gene transcription in breast cells. Thus, these results suggest that the siRNAs and novel sulfonanilides targeting aromatase expression may be valuable tools for selective regulation of aromatase in breast cancer.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: R01 CA073698, R01 CA073698-08, R01 CA73698; NIGMS NIH HHS: T32 GM008512, T32 GM08512

    The Journal of steroid biochemistry and molecular biology 2007;106;1-5;16-23

  • Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) overexpression in meningiomas: real time PCR and immunohistochemistry.

    Buccoliero AM, Castiglione F, Rossi Degl'Innocenti D, Arganini L, Taddei A, Ammannati F, Mennonna P and Taddei GL

    Department of Human Pathology and Oncology, University of Florence, Florence, Italy. ambuccoliero@unifi.it

    Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is the inducible form of the enzyme involved in the first steps of the prostaglandins and thromboxane synthesis. COX-2 up-regulation is demonstrated in tumors where it can modulate tumoral progression, metastasis, multidrug resistance, and angiogenesis. Experimental data suggest a possible therapeutic use of the COX-inhibitors nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). NSAIDs can block tumor growth through many mechanisms, especially through antiangiogenic and proapoptotic effects. Moreover, NSAIDs can also improve the efficacy of radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and hormonal therapy. This study reviews the COX-2 expression as evaluated through immunohistochemistry and real time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) in 23 meningiomas [14 World Health Organization (WHO) grade I; 5 WHO grade II; 3 WHO grade III; 1 oncocytic meningioma]. At immunohistochemistry all the lesions but 4 (83%) were COX-2 positive. At RT-PCR 9 meningiomas, 8 WHO grade I and 1 WHO grade II, showed a COX-2 expression greater than the reference value (average expression of all meningiomas that we studied). The association between tumor grade and immunohistochemical or RT-PCR COX-2 expression was not significant (P=0.427 and P=0.251, respectively). In conclusion, even if further studies on larger series are necessary, the common COX-2 overexpression in meningiomas may suggest considering the COX-2 inhibitors, alone or in combination with radiotherapy, a potential area of therapeutic intervention in some selected meningiomas.

    Applied immunohistochemistry & molecular morphology : AIMM 2007;15;2;187-92

  • Hypermethylation of the COX-2 gene is a potential prognostic marker for cervical cancer.

    Jo H, Kang S, Kim JW, Kang GH, Park NH, Song YS, Park SY, Kang SB and Lee HP

    Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.

    Aim: The aim of the present study was to evaluate the DNA hypermethylation profiles of 14 genes known to be associated with tumor behavior and their clinical significance in cervical cancer.

    Method: The clinical features of 82 patients with stage IB cervical cancer were analyzed in terms of DNA hypermethylation of 14 genes (hMLH1, p16, COX-2, CDH1, APC, DAPK, MGMT, p14, RASSF1A, RUNX3, TIMP3, FHIT, THBS1, and HLTF).

    Results: Of 14 genes investigated, only hypermethylation of COX-2 showed significant association with poor disease-free survival (P = 0.001). To further investigate an alteration in COX-2 expression by DNA hypermethylation, immunohistochemistry for COX-2 protein was performed in the cervical cancer tissues. We found no significant association between hypermethylation and expression patterns of the COX-2 gene.

    Conclusions: The present results suggest that DNA hypermethylation of the COX-2 gene may be a potential prognostic marker in early stage cervical cancer, the underlying mechanism of which is independent of gene silencing.

    The journal of obstetrics and gynaecology research 2007;33;3;236-41

  • Coupling mitochondrial respiratory chain to cell death: an essential role of mitochondrial complex I in the interferon-beta and retinoic acid-induced cancer cell death.

    Huang G, Chen Y, Lu H and Cao X

    Signal Transduction Laboratory, Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, Singapore, Republic of Singapore.

    Combination of retinoic acids (RAs) and interferons (IFNs) has synergistic apoptotic effects and is used in cancer treatment. However, the underlying mechanisms remain unknown. Here, we demonstrate that mitochondrial respiratory chain (MRC) plays an essential role in the IFN-beta/RA-induced cancer cell death. We found that IFN-beta/RA upregulates the expression of MRC complex subunits. Mitochondrial-nuclear translocation of these subunits was not observed, but overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS), which causes loss of mitochondrial function, was detected upon IFN-beta/RA treatment. Knockdown of GRIM-19 (gene associated with retinoid-interferon-induced mortality-19) and NDUFS3 (NADH dehydrogenase (ubiquinone) Fe-S protein 3), two subunits of MRC complex I, by siRNA in two cancer cell lines conferred resistance to IFN-beta/RA-induced apoptosis and reduced ROS production. In parallel, expression of late genes induced by IFN-beta/RA that are directly involved in growth inhibition and cell death was also repressed in the knockdown cells. Our data suggest that the MRC regulates IFN-beta/RA-induced cell death by modulating ROS production and late gene expression.

    Cell death and differentiation 2007;14;2;327-37

  • Origin and expansion of haplogroup H, the dominant human mitochondrial DNA lineage in West Eurasia: the Near Eastern and Caucasian perspective.

    Roostalu U, Kutuev I, Loogväli EL, Metspalu E, Tambets K, Reidla M, Khusnutdinova EK, Usanga E, Kivisild T and Villems R

    Department of Evolutionary Biology, Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Tartu and Estonian Biocentre, Tartu, Estonia.

    More than a third of the European pool of human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is fragmented into a number of subclades of haplogroup (hg) H, the most frequent hg throughout western Eurasia. Although there has been considerable recent progress in studying mitochondrial genome variation in Europe at the complete sequence resolution, little data of comparable resolution is so far available for regions like the Caucasus and the Near and Middle East-areas where most of European genetic lineages, including hg H, have likely emerged. This gap in our knowledge causes a serious hindrance for progress in understanding the demographic prehistory of Europe and western Eurasia in general. Here we describe the phylogeography of hg H in the populations of the Near East and the Caucasus. We have analyzed 545 samples of hg H at high resolution, including 15 novel complete mtDNA sequences. As in Europe, most of the present-day Near Eastern-Caucasus area variants of hg H started to expand after the last glacial maximum (LGM) and presumably before the Holocene. Yet importantly, several hg H subclades in Near East and Southern Caucasus region coalesce to the pre-LGM period. Furthermore, irrespective of their common origin, significant differences between the distribution of hg H sub-hgs in Europe and in the Near East and South Caucasus imply limited post-LGM maternal gene flow between these regions. In a contrast, the North Caucasus mitochondrial gene pool has received an influx of hg H variants, arriving from the Ponto-Caspian/East European area.

    Molecular biology and evolution 2007;24;2;436-48

  • Large-scale mapping of human protein-protein interactions by mass spectrometry.

    Ewing RM, Chu P, Elisma F, Li H, Taylor P, Climie S, McBroom-Cerajewski L, Robinson MD, O'Connor L, Li M, Taylor R, Dharsee M, Ho Y, Heilbut A, Moore L, Zhang S, Ornatsky O, Bukhman YV, Ethier M, Sheng Y, Vasilescu J, Abu-Farha M, Lambert JP, Duewel HS, Stewart II, Kuehl B, Hogue K, Colwill K, Gladwish K, Muskat B, Kinach R, Adams SL, Moran MF, Morin GB, Topaloglou T and Figeys D

    Protana, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

    Mapping protein-protein interactions is an invaluable tool for understanding protein function. Here, we report the first large-scale study of protein-protein interactions in human cells using a mass spectrometry-based approach. The study maps protein interactions for 338 bait proteins that were selected based on known or suspected disease and functional associations. Large-scale immunoprecipitation of Flag-tagged versions of these proteins followed by LC-ESI-MS/MS analysis resulted in the identification of 24,540 potential protein interactions. False positives and redundant hits were filtered out using empirical criteria and a calculated interaction confidence score, producing a data set of 6463 interactions between 2235 distinct proteins. This data set was further cross-validated using previously published and predicted human protein interactions. In-depth mining of the data set shows that it represents a valuable source of novel protein-protein interactions with relevance to human diseases. In addition, via our preliminary analysis, we report many novel protein interactions and pathway associations.

    Molecular systems biology 2007;3;89

  • [NF-kappaB subunit p65/RelA expression in ovarian carcinoma: prognostic impact and link to COX-2 overexpression].

    Niesporek S, Weichert W, Sinn B, Röske A, Noske A, Buckendahl AC, Wirtz R, Sehouli J, Koensgen D, Dietel M and Denkert C

    Institut für Pathologie, Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Campus Mitte

    Aims: NF-kappaB has been demonstrated to activate proliferative, inflammatory, and angiogenic processes in ovarian cancer cells in vitro. To add translational information on the situation in vivo, we determined the expression pattern of p65, an important subunit of the classic NF-kappaB pathway, in ovarian carcinoma tissue, and investigated in vivo and in vitro whether this pathway is implicated in the known overexpression of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2).

    Methods: p65 siRNA, chemiluminescent NF-kappaB transcription factor assay, Taqman PCR, as well as immunoblotting were performed with OVCAR-3 ovarian cancer cells. 83 primary ovarian cancinomas as well as 17 cases of benign ovarian tissue were analyzed by p65 and COX-2 immunohistochemistry using a tissue microarray.

    Results: DNA-binding avtivity as well as COX-2 mRNA and protein expression were strongly inducible by IL-1beta treatment in OVCAR-3 cells, while p65 siRNA inhibited IL-1beta-dependent p65 activity (p = 0.037) as well as COX-2 expression on the mRNA (p < 0.03) and on the protein level. In human tumor tissue, p65 protein expression was significantly associated with COX-2 expression (p = 0.002) as well as tumor grading (p = 0.005). Furthermore, p65 expression was a significant prognostic indicator of a reduced patient survival both in univariate (p = 0.038) and in multivariate analysis (p = 0.014).

    Conclusion: Our study indicates a deregulation of the classical NF-kappaB pathway in ovarian cancer, which results in the overexpression of the NF-kappaB target gene COX-2. Components of this pathway might constitute novel attractive targets for a specific therapy of advanced ovarian cancer.

    Verhandlungen der Deutschen Gesellschaft fur Pathologie 2007;91;243-9

  • The mtDNA legacy of the Levantine early Upper Palaeolithic in Africa.

    Olivieri A, Achilli A, Pala M, Battaglia V, Fornarino S, Al-Zahery N, Scozzari R, Cruciani F, Behar DM, Dugoujon JM, Coudray C, Santachiara-Benerecetti AS, Semino O, Bandelt HJ and Torroni A

    Dipartimento di Genetica e Microbiologia, Università di Pavia, Via Ferrata 1, 27100 Pavia, Italy.

    Sequencing of 81 entire human mitochondrial DNAs (mtDNAs) belonging to haplogroups M1 and U6 reveals that these predominantly North African clades arose in southwestern Asia and moved together to Africa about 40,000 to 45,000 years ago. Their arrival temporally overlaps with the event(s) that led to the peopling of Europe by modern humans and was most likely the result of the same change in climate conditions that allowed humans to enter the Levant, opening the way to the colonization of both Europe and North Africa. Thus, the early Upper Palaeolithic population(s) carrying M1 and U6 did not return to Africa along the southern coastal route of the "out of Africa" exit, but from the Mediterranean area; and the North African Dabban and European Aurignacian industries derived from a common Levantine source.

    Science (New York, N.Y.) 2006;314;5806;1767-70

  • Phylogeography and ethnogenesis of aboriginal Southeast Asians.

    Hill C, Soares P, Mormina M, Macaulay V, Meehan W, Blackburn J, Clarke D, Raja JM, Ismail P, Bulbeck D, Oppenheimer S and Richards M

    Faculty of Biological Sciences, Institute of Integrative and Comparative Biology, University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom.

    Studying the genetic history of the Orang Asli of Peninsular Malaysia can provide crucial clues to the peopling of Southeast Asia as a whole. We have analyzed mitochondrial DNA (mtDNAs) control-region and coding-region markers in 447 mtDNAs from the region, including 260 Orang Asli, representative of each of the traditional groupings, the Semang, the Senoi, and the Aboriginal Malays, allowing us to test hypotheses about their origins. All of the Orang Asli groups have undergone high levels of genetic drift, but phylogeographic traces nevertheless remain of the ancestry of their maternal lineages. The Semang have a deep ancestry within the Malay Peninsula, dating to the initial settlement from Africa >50,000 years ago. The Senoi appear to be a composite group, with approximately half of the maternal lineages tracing back to the ancestors of the Semang and about half to Indochina. This is in agreement with the suggestion that they represent the descendants of early Austroasiatic speaking agriculturalists, who brought both their language and their technology to the southern part of the peninsula approximately 4,000 years ago and coalesced with the indigenous population. The Aboriginal Malays are more diverse, and although they show some connections with island Southeast Asia, as expected, they also harbor haplogroups that are either novel or rare elsewhere. Contrary to expectations, complete mtDNA genome sequences from one of these, R9b, suggest an ancestry in Indochina around the time of the Last Glacial Maximum, followed by an early-Holocene dispersal through the Malay Peninsula into island Southeast Asia.

    Molecular biology and evolution 2006;23;12;2480-91

  • Analysis of mitochondrial DNA sequences in patients with isolated or combined oxidative phosphorylation system deficiency.

    Hinttala R, Smeets R, Moilanen JS, Ugalde C, Uusimaa J, Smeitink JA and Majamaa K

    Background: Enzyme deficiencies of the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system may be caused by mutations in the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) or in the nuclear DNA.

    Objective: To analyse the sequences of the mtDNA coding region in 25 patients with OXPHOS system deficiency to identify the underlying genetic defect.

    Results: Three novel non-synonymous substitutions in protein-coding genes, 4681T-->C in MT-ND2, 9891T-->C in MT-CO3 and 14122A-->G in MT-ND5, and one novel substitution in the 12S rRNA gene, 686A-->G, were found. The definitely pathogenic mutation 3460G-->A was identified in an 18-year-old woman who had severe isolated complex I deficiency and progressive myopathy.

    Conclusions: Bioinformatic analyses suggest a pathogenic role for the novel 4681T-->C substitution found in a boy with Leigh's disease. These results show that the clinical phenotype caused by the primary Leber's hereditary optic neuropathy mutation 3460G-->A is more variable than has been thought. In the remaining 23 patients, the role of mtDNA mutations as a cause of the OXPHOS system deficiency could be excluded. The deficiency in these children probably originates from mutations in the nuclear genes coding for respiratory enzyme subunits or assembly factors.

    Journal of medical genetics 2006;43;11;881-6

  • High resolution analysis and phylogenetic network construction using complete mtDNA sequences in sardinian genetic isolates.

    Fraumene C, Belle EM, Castrì L, Sanna S, Mancosu G, Cosso M, Marras F, Barbujani G, Pirastu M and Angius A

    Shardna Life Sciences, Pula (Cagliari), Italy.

    For mitochondrial phylogenetic analysis, the best result comes from complete sequences. We therefore decided to sequence the entire mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) (coding and D-loop regions) of 63 individuals selected in 3 small Ogliastra villages, an isolated area of eastern Sardinia: Talana, Urzulei, and Perdasdefogu. We studied at least one individual for each of the most frequent maternal genealogical lineages belonging to haplogroups H, V, J, K, T, U, and X. We found in our 63 samples, 172 and 69 sequence changes in the coding and in the D-loop region, respectively. Thirteen out of 172 sequence changes in the coding region are novel. It is our hypothesis that some of them are characteristic of the Ogliastra region and/or Sardinia. We reconstructed the phylogenetic network of the 63 complete mtDNA sequences for the 3 villages. We also drew a network including a large number of European sequences and calculated various indices of genetic diversity in Ogliastra. It appears that these small populations remained extremely isolated and genetically differentiated compared with other European populations. We also identified in our samples a never previously described subhaplogroup, U5b3, which seems peculiar to the Ogliastra region.

    Molecular biology and evolution 2006;23;11;2101-11

  • Deciphering past human population movements in Oceania: provably optimal trees of 127 mtDNA genomes.

    Pierson MJ, Martinez-Arias R, Holland BR, Gemmell NJ, Hurles ME and Penny D

    Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand. mjp110@student.canterbury.ac.nz

    The settlement of the many island groups of Remote Oceania occurred relatively late in prehistory, beginning approximately 3,000 years ago when people sailed eastwards into the Pacific from Near Oceania, where evidence of human settlement dates from as early as 40,000 years ago. Archeological and linguistic analyses have suggested the settlers of Remote Oceania had ancestry in Taiwan, as descendants of a proposed Neolithic expansion that began approximately 5,500 years ago. Other researchers have suggested that the settlers were descendants of peoples from Island Southeast Asia or the existing inhabitants of Near Oceania alone. To explore patterns of maternal descent in Oceania, we have assembled and analyzed a data set of 137 mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) genomes from Oceania, Australia, Island Southeast Asia, and Taiwan that includes 19 sequences generated for this project. Using the MinMax Squeeze Approach (MMS), we report the consensus network of 165 most parsimonious trees for the Oceanic data set, increasing by many orders of magnitude the numbers of trees for which a provable minimal solution has been found. The new mtDNA sequences highlight the limitations of partial sequencing for assigning sequences to haplogroups and dating recent divergence events. The provably optimal trees found for the entire mtDNA sequences using the MMS method provide a reliable and robust framework for the interpretation of evolutionary relationships and confirm that the female settlers of Remote Oceania descended from both the existing inhabitants of Near Oceania and more recent migrants into the region.

    Funded by: Wellcome Trust: 077014

    Molecular biology and evolution 2006;23;10;1966-75

  • Mitochondrial genomics identifies major haplogroups in Aboriginal Australians.

    van Holst Pellekaan SM, Ingman M, Roberts-Thomson J and Harding RM

    School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, University of New South Wales, Kensington, New South Wales 2052, Australia. s.vanholst@unsw.edu.au

    We classified diversity in eight new complete mitochondrial genome sequences and 41 partial sequences from living Aboriginal Australians into five haplogroups. Haplogroup AuB belongs to global lineage M, and AuA, AuC, AuD, and AuE to N. Within N, we recognize subdivisions, assigning AuA to haplogroup S, AuD to haplogroup O, AuC to P4, and AuE to P8. On available evidence, (S)AuA and (M)AuB are widespread in Australia. (P4)AuC is found in the Riverine region of western New South Wales, and was identified by others in northern Australia. (O)AuD and (P8)AuE were clearly identified only from central Australia. Our eight Australian full mt genome sequences, combined with 20 others (Ingman and Gyllensten 2003 Genome Res. 13:1600-1606) and compared with full mt genome sequences from regions to the north that include Papua New Guinea, Malaya, and Andaman and Nicobar Islands, show that ancestral connections between regions are deep and limited to clustering at the level of the N and M macrohaplogroups. The Australian-specific distribution of the five haplogroups identified indicates genetic isolation over a long period. Ancestral connections within Australia are deeper than those reflected by known linguistic or culturally based affinities. Applying a coalescence analysis to a gene tree for the coding regions of the eight genomic sequences, we made estimates of time depth that support a continuity of presence for the descendants of a founding population already established by 40,000 years ago.

    American journal of physical anthropology 2006;131;2;282-94

  • Updating the East Asian mtDNA phylogeny: a prerequisite for the identification of pathogenic mutations.

    Kong QP, Bandelt HJ, Sun C, Yao YG, Salas A, Achilli A, Wang CY, Zhong L, Zhu CL, Wu SF, Torroni A and Zhang YP

    Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Evolution, and Molecular Biology of Domestic Animals, Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, China. kongqp@yahoo.com.cn

    Knowledge about the world phylogeny of human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is essential not only for evaluating the pathogenic role of specific mtDNA mutations but also for performing reliable association studies between mtDNA haplogroups and complex disorders. In the past few years, the main features of the East Asian portion of the mtDNA phylogeny have been determined on the basis of complete sequencing efforts, but representatives of several basal lineages were still lacking. Moreover, some recently published complete mtDNA sequences did apparently not fit into the known phylogenetic tree and conflicted with the established nomenclature. To refine the East Asian mtDNA tree and resolve data conflicts, we first completely sequenced 20 carefully selected mtDNAs--likely representatives of novel sub-haplogroups--and then, in order to distinguish diagnostic mutations of novel haplogroups from private variants, we applied a 'motif-search' procedure to a large sample collection. The novel information was incorporated into an updated East Asian mtDNA tree encompassing more than 1000 (near-) complete mtDNA sequences. A reassessment of the mtDNA data from a series of disease studies testified to the usefulness of such a refined mtDNA tree in evaluating the pathogenicity of mtDNA mutations. In particular, the claimed pathogenic role of mutations G3316A, T3394C, A4833G and G15497A appears to be most questionable as those initial claims were derived from anecdotal findings rather than e.g. appropriate association studies. Following a guideline based on the phylogenetic knowledge as proposed here could help avoiding similar problems in the future.

    Human molecular genetics 2006;15;13;2076-86

  • Mitochondrial DNA sequence variation and mutation rate in patients with CADASIL.

    Annunen-Rasila J, Finnilä S, Mykkänen K, Moilanen JS, Veijola J, Pöyhönen M, Viitanen M, Kalimo H and Majamaa K

    Department of Neurology, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.

    Mutations in the NOTCH3 gene cause cerebral autosomal dominant arteriopathy with subcortical infarcts and leukoencephalopathy (CADASIL), which is clinically characterised by recurrent ischemic strokes, migraine with aura, psychiatric symptoms, cognitive decline and dementia. We have previously described a patient with CADASIL caused by a R133C mutation in the NOTCH3 gene and with a concomitant myopathy caused by a 5650G>A mutation in the MTTA gene in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). We assume that the co-occurrence of the two mutations is not coincidental and that mutations in the NOTCH3 gene may predispose the mtDNA to mutations. We therefore examined the nucleotide variation in the mtDNA coding region sequences in 20 CADASIL pedigrees with 77 affected patients by conformation-sensitive gel electrophoresis and sequencing. The sequence variation in mtDNA was then compared with that among 192 healthy Finns. A total of 180 mtDNA coding region sequence differences were found relative to the revised Cambridge reference sequence, including five novel synonymous substitutions, two novel nonsynonymous substitutions and one novel tRNA substitution. We found that maternal relatives in two pedigrees differed from each other in their mtDNA. Furthermore, the average number of pairwise differences in sequences from the 41 unrelated maternal lineages with CADASIL was higher than that expected among haplogroup-matched controls. The numbers of polymorphic sites and polymorphisms that were present in only one sequence were also higher among the CADASIL sequences than among the control sequences. Our results show that mtDNA sequence variation is increased within CADASIL pedigrees. These findings suggest a relationship between NOTCH3 and mtDNA.

    Neurogenetics 2006;7;3;185-94

  • Harvesting the fruit of the human mtDNA tree.

    Torroni A, Achilli A, Macaulay V, Richards M and Bandelt HJ

    Dipartimento di Genetica e Microbiologia, Università di Pavia, Via Ferrata 1, 27100 Pavia, Italy. torroni@ipvgen.unipv.it

    Human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) studies have entered a new phase since the blossoming of complete genome analyses. Sequencing complete mtDNAs is more expensive and more labour intensive than restriction analysis or simply sequencing the control region of the molecule. But the efforts are paying off, as the phylogenetic resolution of the mtDNA tree has been greatly improved, and, in turn, phylogeographic interpretations can be given correspondingly greater precision in terms of the timing and direction of human dispersals. Therefore, despite mtDNA being only a fraction of our total genome, the deciphering of its evolution is profoundly changing our perception about how modern humans spread across our planet. Here we illustrate the phylogeographic approach with two case studies: the initial dispersal out of Africa, and the colonization of Europe.

    Trends in genetics : TIG 2006;22;6;339-45

  • The mitochondrial lineage U8a reveals a Paleolithic settlement in the Basque country.

    González AM, García O, Larruga JM and Cabrera VM

    Department of Genetics, Faculty of Biology, University of La Laguna, 38271 Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain. amglez@ull.es

    Background: It is customary, in population genetics studies, to consider Basques as the direct descendants of the Paleolithic Europeans. However, until now there has been no irrefutable genetic proof to support this supposition. Even studies based on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), an ideal molecule for constructing datable maternal genealogies, have failed to achieve this. It could be that incoming gene flow has replaced the Basque ancient lineages but it could also be that these lineages have not been detected due to a lack of resolution of the Basque mtDNA genealogies. To assess this possibility we analyzed here the mtDNA of a large sample of autochthonous Basques using mtDNA genomic sequencing for those lineages that could not be unequivocally classified by diagnostic RFLP analysis and control region (HVSI and HVSII) sequencing.

    Results: We show that Basques have the most ancestral phylogeny in Europe for the rare mitochondrial subhaplogroup U8a. Divergence times situate the Basque origin of this lineage in the Upper Palaeolithic. Most probably, their primitive founders came from West Asia. The lack of U8a lineages in Africa points to an European and not a North African route of entrance. Phylogeographic analysis suggest that U8a had two expansion periods in Europe, the first, from a south-western area including the Iberian peninsula and Mediterranean France before 30,000 years ago, and the second, from Central Europe around 15,000-10,000 years ago.

    Conclusion: It has been demonstrated, for the first time, that Basques show the oldest lineages in Europe for subhaplogroup U8a. Coalescence times for these lineages suggest their presence in the Basque country since the Upper Paleolithic. The European U8 phylogeography is congruent with the supposition that Basques could have participated in demographic re-expansions to repopulate central Europe in the last interglacial periods.

    BMC genomics 2006;7;124

  • Haplogroup effects and recombination of mitochondrial DNA: novel clues from the analysis of Leber hereditary optic neuropathy pedigrees.

    Carelli V, Achilli A, Valentino ML, Rengo C, Semino O, Pala M, Olivieri A, Mattiazzi M, Pallotti F, Carrara F, Zeviani M, Leuzzi V, Carducci C, Valle G, Simionati B, Mendieta L, Salomao S, Belfort R, Sadun AA and Torroni A

    Dipartimento di Scienze Neurologiche, Universita di Bologna, Bologna, Italy.

    The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) of 87 index cases with Leber hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON) sequentially diagnosed in Italy, including an extremely large Brazilian family of Italian maternal ancestry, was evaluated in detail. Only seven pairs and three triplets of identical haplotypes were observed, attesting that the large majority of the LHON mutations were due to independent mutational events. Assignment of the mutational events into haplogroups confirmed that J1 and J2 play a role in LHON expression but narrowed the association to the subclades J1c and J2b, thus suggesting that two specific combinations of amino acid changes in the cytochrome b are the cause of the mtDNA background effect and that this may occur at the level of the supercomplex formed by respiratory-chain complexes I and III. The families with identical haplotypes were genealogically reinvestigated, which led to the reconnection into extended pedigrees of three pairs of families, including the Brazilian family with its Italian counterpart. The sequencing of entire mtDNA samples from the reconnected families confirmed the genealogical reconstruction but showed that the Brazilian family was heteroplasmic at two control-region positions. The survey of the two sites in 12 of the Brazilian subjects revealed triplasmy in most cases, but there was no evidence of the tetraplasmy that would be expected in the case of mtDNA recombination.

    Funded by: Telethon: GGP030039

    American journal of human genetics 2006;78;4;564-74

  • Novel mitochondrial DNA length variants and genetic instability in a family with diabetes and deafness.

    Janssen GM, Neu A, 't Hart LM, van de Sande CM and Antonie Maassen J

    Department of Molecular Cell Biology, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands. g.m.c.janssen@lumc.nl

    We have identified two locations with novel multiplasmic length variants in the mitochondrial DNA of a family with diabetes and deafness. At nt568 in the D-loop, the 6-bp polycytidine tract was found to be variable in length up to a total of 12 residues. A second region with length variants was found at nt8281 in the intergenic COII-tRNA(Lys) region, which consists of two copies of the 9-bp repeat CCCCCTCTA. Only the second repeat occurs in a heteroplasmic C(9-14)A form with both T residues largely deleted. In addition, the mtDNA contained a number of new homoplasmic point mutations. Both length variants are stably inherited in a maternal way with no major changes in their length distribution. In contrast, during culture of fibroblasts from the proband the average length of the polycytidine tracts is increased at both locations indicating a fibroblast-specific genetic instability. Cybrid cells containing mtDNA from the proband proliferate less efficient than cybrids with wild-type mtDNA in co-culture experiments, suggesting functional consequences of the mtDNA length variants or the additional homoplasmic point mutations. Since oxygen consumption was not severely affected, these mutation seem less detrimental for mitochondrial function than the A3243G diabetogenic mutation and most other pathogenic mtDNA mutations. The contribution of mtDNA length variants to the phenotype of members of this family is discussed.

    Experimental and clinical endocrinology & diabetes : official journal, German Society of Endocrinology [and] German Diabetes Association 2006;114;4;168-74

  • The dazzling array of basal branches in the mtDNA macrohaplogroup M from India as inferred from complete genomes.

    Sun C, Kong QP, Palanichamy MG, Agrawal S, Bandelt HJ, Yao YG, Khan F, Zhu CL, Chaudhuri TK and Zhang YP

    Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Evolution, and Molecular Biology of Domestic Animals, Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, China.

    Many efforts based on complete mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) genomes have been made to depict the global mtDNA landscape, but the phylogeny of Indian macrohaplogroup M has not yet been resolved in detail. To fill this lacuna, we took the same strategy as in our recent analysis of Indian mtDNA macrohaplogroup N and selected 56 mtDNAs from over 1,200 samples across India for complete sequencing, with the intention to cover all Indian autochthonous M lineages. As a result, the phylogenetic status of previously identified haplogroups based on control-region and/or partial coding-region information, such as M2, M3, M4, M5, M6, M30, and M33, was solidified or redefined here. Moreover, seven novel basal M haplogroups (viz., M34-M40) were identified, and yet another five singular branches of the M phylogeny were discovered in the present study. The comparison of matrilineal components among India, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and Oceania at the deepest level yielded a star-like and nonoverlapping pattern, reflecting a rapid mode of modern human dispersal along the Asian coast after the initial "out-of-Africa" event.

    Molecular biology and evolution 2006;23;3;683-90

  • The matrilineal ancestry of Ashkenazi Jewry: portrait of a recent founder event.

    Behar DM, Metspalu E, Kivisild T, Achilli A, Hadid Y, Tzur S, Pereira L, Amorim A, Quintana-Murci L, Majamaa K, Herrnstadt C, Howell N, Balanovsky O, Kutuev I, Pshenichnov A, Gurwitz D, Bonne-Tamir B, Torroni A, Villems R and Skorecki K

    Rappaport Faculty of Medicine and Research Institute, Technion and Rambam Medical Center, Haifa, Israel.

    Both the extent and location of the maternal ancestral deme from which the Ashkenazi Jewry arose remain obscure. Here, using complete sequences of the maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), we show that close to one-half of Ashkenazi Jews, estimated at 8,000,000 people, can be traced back to only 4 women carrying distinct mtDNAs that are virtually absent in other populations, with the important exception of low frequencies among non-Ashkenazi Jews. We conclude that four founding mtDNAs, likely of Near Eastern ancestry, underwent major expansion(s) in Europe within the past millennium.

    American journal of human genetics 2006;78;3;487-97

  • The role of selection in the evolution of human mitochondrial genomes.

    Kivisild T, Shen P, Wall DP, Do B, Sung R, Davis K, Passarino G, Underhill PA, Scharfe C, Torroni A, Scozzari R, Modiano D, Coppa A, de Knijff P, Feldman M, Cavalli-Sforza LL and Oefner PJ

    Department of Human and Clinical Genetics, Leiden University Medical Center, 2333 AL Leiden, The Netherlands. tkivisil@ebc.ee

    High mutation rate in mammalian mitochondrial DNA generates a highly divergent pool of alleles even within species that have dispersed and expanded in size recently. Phylogenetic analysis of 277 human mitochondrial genomes revealed a significant (P < 0.01) excess of rRNA and nonsynonymous base substitutions among hotspots of recurrent mutation. Most hotspots involved transitions from guanine to adenine that, with thymine-to-cytosine transitions, illustrate the asymmetric bias in codon usage at synonymous sites on the heavy-strand DNA. The mitochondrion-encoded tRNAThr varied significantly more than any other tRNA gene. Threonine and valine codons were involved in 259 of the 414 amino acid replacements observed. The ratio of nonsynonymous changes from and to threonine and valine differed significantly (P = 0.003) between populations with neutral (22/58) and populations with significantly negative Tajima's D values (70/76), independent of their geographic location. In contrast to a recent suggestion that the excess of nonsilent mutations is characteristic of Arctic populations, implying their role in cold adaptation, we demonstrate that the surplus of nonsynonymous mutations is a general feature of the young branches of the phylogenetic tree, affecting also those that are found only in Africa. We introduce a new calibration method of the mutation rate of synonymous transitions to estimate the coalescent times of mtDNA haplogroups.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM28428, GM55273, GM63883, P01 GM028428, R01 GM063883; Telethon: E.0890

    Genetics 2006;172;1;373-87

  • In situ origin of deep rooting lineages of mitochondrial Macrohaplogroup 'M' in India.

    Thangaraj K, Chaubey G, Singh VK, Vanniarajan A, Thanseem I, Reddy AG and Singh L

    Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad-500 007, India. thangs@ccmb.res.in

    Background: Macrohaplogroups 'M' and 'N' have evolved almost in parallel from a founder haplogroup L3. Macrohaplogroup N in India has already been defined in previous studies and recently the macrohaplogroup M among the Indian populations has been characterized. In this study, we attempted to reconstruct and re-evaluate the phylogeny of Macrohaplogroup M, which harbors more than 60% of the Indian mtDNA lineage, and to shed light on the origin of its deep rooting haplogroups.

    Results: Using 11 whole mtDNA and 2231 partial coding sequence of Indian M lineage selected from 8670 HVS1 sequences across India, we have reconstructed the tree including Andamanese-specific lineage M31 and calculated the time depth of all the nodes. We defined one novel haplogroup M41, and revised the classification of haplogroups M3, M18, and M31.

    Conclusion: Our result indicates that the Indian mtDNA pool consists of several deep rooting lineages of macrohaplogroup 'M' suggesting in-situ origin of these haplogroups in South Asia, most likely in the India. These deep rooting lineages are not language specific and spread over all the language groups in India. Moreover, our reanalysis of the Andamanese-specific lineage M31 suggests population specific two clear-cut subclades (M31a1 and M31a2). Onge and Jarwa share M31a1 branch while M31a2 clade is present in only Great Andamanese individuals. Overall our study supported the one wave, rapid dispersal theory of modern humans along the Asian coast.

    BMC genomics 2006;7;151

  • Mutations in mtDNA-encoded cytochrome c oxidase subunit genes causing isolated myopathy or severe encephalomyopathy.

    Horváth R, Schoser BG, Müller-Höcker J, Völpel M, Jaksch M and Lochmüller H

    Metabolic Disease Center Munich-Schwabing, Institutes of Clinical Chemistry, Molecular Diagnostics and Mitochondrial Genetics, Academic Hospital Schwabing, Kölner Platz 1, 80804 Munich, Germany. Rita.Horvath@lrz.uni-muenchen.de

    We report on clinical, histological and genetic findings in two patients carrying novel heteroplasmic mutations in the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit genes COII and COIII. The first patient, a 35 year-old man had a multisystemic disease, with clinical symptoms of bilateral cataract, sensori-neural hearing loss, myopathy, ataxia, cardiac arrhythmia, depression and short stature and carried a 7970 G>T (E129X) nonsense mutation in COII. A sudden episode of metabolic encephalopathy caused by extremely high blood lactate lead to coma. The second patient developed exercise intolerance and rhabdomyolysis at age 22 years. A heteroplasmic missense mutation 9789 T>C (S195P) was found in skeletal muscle, but not in blood and myoblasts pointing to a sporadic mutation. Our report of two patients with isolated COX deficiency and new mutations in COX subunit genes may help to draw more attention to this type of mtDNA defects and provide new aspects for counselling affected families.

    Neuromuscular disorders : NMD 2005;15;12;851-7

  • Ancient mitochondrial M haplogroups identified in the Southwest Pacific.

    Merriwether DA, Hodgson JA, Friedlaender FR, Allaby R, Cerchio S, Koki G and Friedlaender JS

    Department of Anthropology, Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY 13902-6000, USA. andym@binghamton.edu

    Based on whole mtDNA sequencing of 14 samples from Northern Island Melanesia, we characterize three formerly unresolved branches of macrohaplogroup M that we call haplogroups M27, M28, and M29. Our 1,399 mtDNA control region sequences and a literature search indicate these haplogroups have extremely limited geographical distributions. Their coding region variation suggests diversification times older than the estimated date for the initial settlement of Northern Island Melanesia. This finding indicates that they were among the earliest mtDNA variants to appear in these islands or in the ancient continent of Sahul. These haplogroups from Northern Island Melanesia extend the existing schema for macrohaplogroup M, with many independent branches distributed across Asia, East Africa, Australia, and Near Oceania.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2005;102;37;13034-9

  • Traces of archaic mitochondrial lineages persist in Austronesian-speaking Formosan populations.

    Trejaut JA, Kivisild T, Loo JH, Lee CL, He CL, Hsu CJ, Lee ZY, Li ZY and Lin M

    Transfusion Medicine Laboratory, Mackay Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan. jtrejaut@ms1.mmh.org.tw

    Genetic affinities between aboriginal Taiwanese and populations from Oceania and Southeast Asia have previously been explored through analyses of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), Y chromosomal DNA, and human leukocyte antigen loci. Recent genetic studies have supported the "slow boat" and "entangled bank" models according to which the Polynesian migration can be seen as an expansion from Melanesia without any major direct genetic thread leading back to its initiation from Taiwan. We assessed mtDNA variation in 640 individuals from nine tribes of the central mountain ranges and east coast regions of Taiwan. In contrast to the Han populations, the tribes showed a low frequency of haplogroups D4 and G, and an absence of haplogroups A, C, Z, M9, and M10. Also, more than 85% of the maternal lineages were nested within haplogroups B4, B5a, F1a, F3b, E, and M7. Although indicating a common origin of the populations of insular Southeast Asia and Oceania, most mtDNA lineages in Taiwanese aboriginal populations are grouped separately from those found in China and the Taiwan general (Han) population, suggesting a prevalence in the Taiwanese aboriginal gene pool of its initial late Pleistocene settlers. Interestingly, from complete mtDNA sequencing information, most B4a lineages were associated with three coding region substitutions, defining a new subclade, B4a1a, that endorses the origin of Polynesian migration from Taiwan. Coalescence times of B4a1a were 13.2 +/- 3.8 thousand years (or 9.3 +/- 2.5 thousand years in Papuans and Polynesians). Considering the lack of a common specific Y chromosomal element shared by the Taiwanese aboriginals and Polynesians, the mtDNA evidence provided here is also consistent with the suggestion that the proto-Oceanic societies would have been mainly matrilocal.

    PLoS biology 2005;3;8;e247

  • Expanding Southwest Pacific mitochondrial haplogroups P and Q.

    Friedlaender J, Schurr T, Gentz F, Koki G, Friedlaender F, Horvat G, Babb P, Cerchio S, Kaestle F, Schanfield M, Deka R, Yanagihara R and Merriwether DA

    Anthropology Department, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, USA. jfriedla@temple.edu

    Modern humans have occupied New Guinea and the nearby Bismarck and Solomon archipelagos of Island Melanesia for at least 40,000 years. Previous mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) studies indicated that two common lineages in this region, haplogroups P and Q, were particularly diverse, with the coalescence for P considered significantly older than that for Q. In this study, we expand the definition of haplogroup Q so that it includes three major branches, each separated by multiple mutational distinctions (Q1, equivalent to the earlier definition of Q, plus Q2 and Q3). We report three whole-mtDNA genomes that establish Q2 as a major Q branch. In addition, we describe 314 control region sequences that belong to the expanded haplogroups P and Q from our Southwest Pacific collection. The coalescence dates for the largest P and Q branches (P1 and Q1) are similar to each other (approximately 50,000 years old) and considerably older than prior estimates. Newly identified Q2, which was found in Island Melanesian samples just to the east, is somewhat younger by more than 10,000 years. Our coalescence estimates should be more reliable than prior ones because they were based on significantly larger samples as well as complete mtDNA-coding region sequencing. Our estimates are roughly in accord with the current suggested dates for the first settlement of New Guinea-Sahul. The phylogeography of P and Q indicates almost total (female) isolation of ancient New Guinea-Island Melanesia from Australia that may have existed from the time of the first settlement. While Q subsequently diversified extensively in New Guinea-Island Melanesia, it has not been found in Australia. The only shared mtDNA haplogroup between Australia and New Guinea identified to date remains one minor branch of P.

    Molecular biology and evolution 2005;22;6;1506-17

  • Reconstructing the origin of Andaman Islanders.

    Thangaraj K, Chaubey G, Kivisild T, Reddy AG, Singh VK, Rasalkar AA and Singh L

    Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Hyderabad-500 007, India.

    The origin of the Andaman "Negrito" and Nicobar "Mongoloid" populations has been ambiguous. Our analyses of complete mitochondrial DNA sequences from Onges and Great Andaman populations revealed two deeply branching clades that share their most recent common ancestor in founder haplogroup M, with lineages spread among India, Africa, East Asia, New Guinea, and Australia. This distribution suggests that these two clades have likely survived in genetic isolation since the initial settlement of the islands during an out-of-Africa migration by anatomically modern humans. In contrast, Nicobarese sequences illustrate a close genetic relationship with populations from Southeast Asia.

    Science (New York, N.Y.) 2005;308;5724;996

  • Single, rapid coastal settlement of Asia revealed by analysis of complete mitochondrial genomes.

    Macaulay V, Hill C, Achilli A, Rengo C, Clarke D, Meehan W, Blackburn J, Semino O, Scozzari R, Cruciani F, Taha A, Shaari NK, Raja JM, Ismail P, Zainuddin Z, Goodwin W, Bulbeck D, Bandelt HJ, Oppenheimer S, Torroni A and Richards M

    Department of Statistics, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland, UK. vincent@stats.gla.ac.uk

    A recent dispersal of modern humans out of Africa is now widely accepted, but the routes taken across Eurasia are still disputed. We show that mitochondrial DNA variation in isolated "relict" populations in southeast Asia supports the view that there was only a single dispersal from Africa, most likely via a southern coastal route, through India and onward into southeast Asia and Australasia. There was an early offshoot, leading ultimately to the settlement of the Near East and Europe, but the main dispersal from India to Australia approximately 65,000 years ago was rapid, most likely taking only a few thousand years.

    Science (New York, N.Y.) 2005;308;5724;1034-6

  • High prevalence of the COII/tRNA(Lys) intergenic 9-bp deletion in mitochondrial DNA of Taiwanese patients with MELAS or MERRF syndrome.

    Liu CS, Cheng WL, Chen YY, Ma YS, Pang CY and Wei YH

    Vascular and Genomic Research Center, Changhua Christian Hospital, Taiwan.

    The COII/tRNA(Lys) intergenic 9-bp deletion (MIC9D) of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has been established as a genetic polymorphism for Asian-Pacific populations. We investigated whether this small mtDNA deletion is co-transmitted with human diseases such as mitochondrial encephalomyopathy with lactic acidosis and stroke-like episodes (MELAS) and myoclonic epilepsy with ragged-red fibers (MERRF) syndromes. Forty unrelated Taiwanese families, including 12 families with MERRF and A8344G mtDNA mutation and 28 families with MELAS and A3243G mutation of mtDNA, respectively, were recruited in this study. In addition, 199 healthy subjects were recruited as control. We found that the frequency of occurrence of mtDNA with the MIC9D polymorphism in healthy subjects was 21% (41/199). However, the incidence of the MIC9D polymorphism was 67% (8/12) among the probands of all the families with MERRF syndrome (P = 0.001; OR = 8) and 39% (11/28) among the probands of the families with MELAS syndrome (P = 0.038; OR = 2). This finding indicates that the frequency of occurrence of mtDNA with the MIC9D polymorphism in patients with MERRF or MELAS syndrome is higher than that of healthy subjects. The prevalence of mitochondrial encephalomyopathies in relation to the MIC9D polymorphism of mtDNA in Taiwanese population is discussed.

    Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 2005;1042;82-7

  • Saami and Berbers--an unexpected mitochondrial DNA link.

    Achilli A, Rengo C, Battaglia V, Pala M, Olivieri A, Fornarino S, Magri C, Scozzari R, Babudri N, Santachiara-Benerecetti AS, Bandelt HJ, Semino O and Torroni A

    Dipartimento di Genetica e Microbiologia, Università di Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

    The sequencing of entire human mitochondrial DNAs belonging to haplogroup U reveals that this clade arose shortly after the "out of Africa" exit and rapidly radiated into numerous regionally distinct subclades. Intriguingly, the Saami of Scandinavia and the Berbers of North Africa were found to share an extremely young branch, aged merely approximately 9,000 years. This unexpected finding not only confirms that the Franco-Cantabrian refuge area of southwestern Europe was the source of late-glacial expansions of hunter-gatherers that repopulated northern Europe after the Last Glacial Maximum but also reveals a direct maternal link between those European hunter-gatherer populations and the Berbers.

    American journal of human genetics 2005;76;5;883-6

  • Phylogeny and antiquity of M macrohaplogroup inferred from complete mt DNA sequence of Indian specific lineages.

    Rajkumar R, Banerjee J, Gunturi HB, Trivedi R and Kashyap VK

    National DNA Analysis Centre, Central Forensic Science Laboratory, 30 Gorachand Road, Kolkata-70014, India. revathi_77@rediffmail.com

    Background: Analysis of human complete mitochondrial DNA sequences has largely contributed to resolve phylogenies and antiquity of different lineages belonging to the majorhaplogroups L, N and M (East-Asian lineages). In the absence of whole mtDNA sequence information of M lineages reported in India that exhibits highest diversity within the sub-continent, the present study was undertaken to provide a detailed analysis of this macrohaplogroup to precisely characterize and unravel the intricate phylogeny of the lineages and to establish the antiquity of M lineages in India.

    Results: The phylogenetic tree constructed from sequencing information of twenty-four whole mtDNA genome revealed novel substitutions in the previously defined M2a and M6 lineages. The most striking feature of this phylogenetic tree is the recognition of two new lineages, M30 and M31, distinguished by transitions at 12007 and 5319, respectively. M30 comprises of M18 and identifies a potential new sub-lineage possessing substitution at 16223 and 16300. It further branches into M30a sub-lineage, defined by 15431 and 195A substitution. The age of M30 lineage was estimated at 33,042 YBP, indicating a more recent expansion time than M2 (49,686 YBP). The M31 branch encompasses the M6 lineage along with the previously defined M3 and M4 lineages. Contradictory to earlier reports, the M5 lineage does not always include a 12477 substitution, and is more appropriately defined by a transversion at 10986A. The phylogenetic tree also identifies a potential new lineage in the M* branch with HVSI sequence as 16223,16325. Substitutions in M25 were in concordance with previous reports.

    Conclusion: This study describes five new basal mutations and recognizes two new lineages, M30 and M31 that substantially contribute to the present understanding of macrohaplogroup M. These two newly erected lineages include the previously independent lineages M18 and M6 as sub-lineages within them, respectively, suggesting that most mt DNA genomes might arise as limited offshoots of M trunk. Furthermore, this study supports the non existence of lineages such as M3 and M4 that are solely defined on the basis of fast mutating control region motifs and hence, establishes the importance of coding region markers for an accurate understanding of the phylogeny. The deep roots of M phylogeny clearly establish the antiquity of Indian lineages, especially M2, as compared to Ethiopian M1 lineage and hence, support an Asian origin of M majorhaplogroup.

    BMC evolutionary biology 2005;5;26

  • Mitochondrial DNA diversity in indigenous populations of the southern extent of Siberia, and the origins of Native American haplogroups.

    Starikovskaya EB, Sukernik RI, Derbeneva OA, Volodko NV, Ruiz-Pesini E, Torroni A, Brown MD, Lott MT, Hosseini SH, Huoponen K and Wallace DC

    Laboratory of Human Molecular Genetics, Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Siberian Division, Russian Academy of Sciences, Novosibirsk 630090, Russia Federation.

    In search of the ancestors of Native American mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplogroups, we analyzed the mtDNA of 531 individuals from nine indigenous populations in Siberia. All mtDNAs were subjected to high-resolution RFLP analysis, sequencing of the control-region hypervariable segment I (HVS-I), and surveyed for additional polymorphic markers in the coding region. Furthermore, the mtDNAs selected according to haplogroup/subhaplogroup status were completely sequenced. Phylogenetic analyses of the resulting data, combined with those from previously published Siberian arctic and sub-arctic populations, revealed that remnants of the ancient Siberian gene pool are still evident in Siberian populations, suggesting that the founding haplotypes of the Native American A-D branches originated in different parts of Siberia. Thus, lineage A complete sequences revealed in the Mansi of the Lower Ob and the Ket of the Lower Yenisei belong to A1, suggesting that A1 mtDNAs occasionally found in the remnants of hunting-gathering populations of northwestern and northern Siberia belonged to a common gene pool of the Siberian progenitors of Paleoindians. Moreover, lineage B1, which is the most closely related to the American B2, occurred in the Tubalar and Tuvan inhabiting the territory between the upper reaches of the Ob River in the west, to the Upper Yenisei region in the east. Finally, the sequence variants of haplogroups C and D, which are most similar to Native American C1 and D1, were detected in the Ulchi of the Lower Amur. Overall, our data suggest that the immediate ancestors of the Siberian/Beringian migrants who gave rise to ancient (pre-Clovis) Paleoindians have a common origin with aboriginal people of the area now designated the Altai-Sayan Upland, as well as the Lower Amur/Sea of Okhotsk region.

    Funded by: NHLBI NIH HHS: HL64017, R01 HL064017; NIA NIH HHS: AG13154, R01 AG013154; NINDS NIH HHS: NS21328, NS41850, R01 NS021328, R01 NS041850

    Annals of human genetics 2005;69;Pt 1;67-89

  • Arachidonate lipoxygenase (ALOX) and cyclooxygenase (COX) polymorphisms and colon cancer risk.

    Goodman JE, Bowman ED, Chanock SJ, Alberg AJ and Harris CC

    Laboratory of Human Carcinogensis, Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program, Division of Cancer Prevention, National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.

    In the human colon, arachidonic acid is metabolized primarily by cyclooxygenase (COX) and arachidonate lipoxygenase (ALOX) to bioactive lipids, which are implicated in colon cancer risk. Several polymorphisms in ALOX and COX genes have been identified, including G-1752A, G-1699A and Glu254Lys in ALOX5; Gln261Arg in ALOX12; Leu237Met and Val481Ile in COX1; and C-645T and Val511Ala in COX2. Because of the significant role of arachidonic acid metabolism in colon cancer, we hypothesized that these polymorphisms could influence susceptibility to colon cancer. We addressed this hypothesis in African-Americans and Caucasians using colon cancer cases (n = 293) and hospital- (n = 229) and population-based (n = 304) control groups. Polymorphisms did not differ between the control groups (P > 0.05); thus, they are combined for all analyses presented. ALOX5 Glu254Lys and COX2 C-645T and Val511Ala allele frequencies differed between Caucasians and African-American controls (P < 0.001). The ALOX5 -1752 and -1699 polymorphisms were in linkage disequilibrium (P < 0.001) and associated with a decreased risk in Caucasians in ALOX5 haplotype analyses (P = 0.03). Furthermore, an inverse association was observed between A alleles at positions -1752 and -1699 of ALOX5 and colon cancer risk in Caucasians, but not in African-Americans. Caucasians with A alleles at ALOX5 -1752 had a reduced odds of colon cancer versus those with G alleles [odds ratio (OR) (GA versus GG), 0.63; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.39-1.01; OR (AA versus GG), 0.33; 95% CI, 0.07-1.65, P(trend) = 0.02]. Similar results were observed for ALOX5 G-1699A [OR (GA versus GG), 0.59, 95% CI, 0.37-0.94; OR (AA versus GG), 0.27, 95% CI, 0.06-1.32, P(trend) = 0.01]. Statistically significant associations with colon cancer were not observed for the other polymorphisms investigated. We have shown for the first time that a haplotype containing ALOX5 G-1752A and G-1699A in a negative regulatory region of the promoter may influence colon cancer risk in Caucasians.

    Carcinogenesis 2004;25;12;2467-72

  • Phylogeny of mitochondrial DNA macrohaplogroup N in India, based on complete sequencing: implications for the peopling of South Asia.

    Palanichamy MG, Sun C, Agrawal S, Bandelt HJ, Kong QP, Khan F, Wang CY, Chaudhuri TK, Palla V and Zhang YP

    Laboratory for Conservation and Utilization of Bioresources, Yunnan University, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, China.

    To resolve the phylogeny of the autochthonous mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplogroups of India and determine the relationship between the Indian and western Eurasian mtDNA pools more precisely, a diverse subset of 75 macrohaplogroup N lineages was chosen for complete sequencing from a collection of >800 control-region sequences sampled across India. We identified five new autochthonous haplogroups (R7, R8, R30, R31, and N5) and fully characterized the autochthonous haplogroups (R5, R6, N1d, U2a, U2b, and U2c) that were previously described only by first hypervariable segment (HVS-I) sequencing and coding-region restriction-fragment-length polymorphism analysis. Our findings demonstrate that the Indian mtDNA pool, even when restricted to macrohaplogroup N, harbors at least as many deepest-branching lineages as the western Eurasian mtDNA pool. Moreover, the distribution of the earliest branches within haplogroups M, N, and R across Eurasia and Oceania provides additional evidence for a three-founder-mtDNA scenario and a single migration route out of Africa.

    American journal of human genetics 2004;75;6;966-78

  • The molecular dissection of mtDNA haplogroup H confirms that the Franco-Cantabrian glacial refuge was a major source for the European gene pool.

    Achilli A, Rengo C, Magri C, Battaglia V, Olivieri A, Scozzari R, Cruciani F, Zeviani M, Briem E, Carelli V, Moral P, Dugoujon JM, Roostalu U, Loogväli EL, Kivisild T, Bandelt HJ, Richards M, Villems R, Santachiara-Benerecetti AS, Semino O and Torroni A

    Dipartimento di Genetica e Microbiologia, Università di Pavia, Pavia, Italy.

    Complete sequencing of 62 mitochondrial DNAs (mtDNAs) belonging (or very closely related) to haplogroup H revealed that this mtDNA haplogroup--by far the most common in Europe--is subdivided into numerous subhaplogroups, with at least 15 of them (H1-H15) identifiable by characteristic mutations. All the haplogroup H mtDNAs found in 5,743 subjects from 43 populations were then screened for diagnostic markers of subhaplogroups H1 and H3. This survey showed that both subhaplogroups display frequency peaks, centered in Iberia and surrounding areas, with distributions declining toward the northeast and southeast--a pattern extremely similar to that previously reported for mtDNA haplogroup V. Furthermore, the coalescence ages of H1 and H3 (~11,000 years) are close to that previously reported for V. These findings have major implications for the origin of Europeans, since they attest that the Franco-Cantabrian refuge area was indeed the source of late-glacial expansions of hunter-gatherers that repopulated much of Central and Northern Europe from ~15,000 years ago. This has also some implications for disease studies. For instance, the high occurrence of H1 and H3 in Iberia led us to re-evaluate the haplogroup distribution in 50 Spanish families affected by nonsyndromic sensorineural deafness due to the A1555G mutation. The survey revealed that the previously reported excess of H among these families is caused entirely by H3 and is due to a major, probably nonrecent, founder event.

    American journal of human genetics 2004;75;5;910-8

  • Mitochondrial genome variation in eastern Asia and the peopling of Japan.

    Tanaka M, Cabrera VM, González AM, Larruga JM, Takeyasu T, Fuku N, Guo LJ, Hirose R, Fujita Y, Kurata M, Shinoda K, Umetsu K, Yamada Y, Oshida Y, Sato Y, Hattori N, Mizuno Y, Arai Y, Hirose N, Ohta S, Ogawa O, Tanaka Y, Kawamori R, Shamoto-Nagai M, Maruyama W, Shimokata H, Suzuki R and Shimodaira H

    Department of Gene Therapy, Gifu International Institute of Biotechnology, Kakamigahara, Gifu 504-0838, Japan. mtanaka@giib

    To construct an East Asia mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) phylogeny, we sequenced the complete mitochondrial genomes of 672 Japanese individuals (http://www.giib.or.jp/mtsnp/index_e.html). This allowed us to perform a phylogenetic analysis with a pool of 942 Asiatic sequences. New clades and subclades emerged from the Japanese data. On the basis of this unequivocal phylogeny, we classified 4713 Asian partial mitochondrial sequences, with <10% ambiguity. Applying population and phylogeographic methods, we used these sequences to shed light on the controversial issue of the peopling of Japan. Population-based comparisons confirmed that present-day Japanese have their closest genetic affinity to northern Asian populations, especially to Koreans, which finding is congruent with the proposed Continental gene flow to Japan after the Yayoi period. This phylogeographic approach unraveled a high degree of differentiation in Paleolithic Japanese. Ancient southern and northern migrations were detected based on the existence of basic M and N lineages in Ryukyuans and Ainu. Direct connections with Tibet, parallel to those found for the Y-chromosome, were also apparent. Furthermore, the highest diversity found in Japan for some derived clades suggests that Japan could be included in an area of migratory expansion to Continental Asia. All the theories that have been proposed up to now to explain the peopling of Japan seem insufficient to accommodate fully this complex picture.

    Genome research 2004;14;10A;1832-50

  • Functional effects and gender association of COX-2 gene polymorphism G-765C in bronchial asthma.

    Szczeklik W, Sanak M and Szczeklik A

    Department of Medicine, Jagiellonian University School of Medicine, Kraków, Poland.

    Background: Prostaglandins, generated via the COX pathways, are essential mediators of inflammation in bronchial asthma. The promoter polymorphism of COX-2 gene (G-765C), which might affect binding of transcription factors, has recently been described

    Objective: To study distribution and function of the genetic COX-2 variant in patients with asthma compared with healthy controls.

    Methods: Three groups of adults were studied: (1) patients with aspirin-induced asthma (AIA; n=112), (2) asthmatic patients who tolerated aspirin (ATA; n=198), and (3) a random population sample from city of Krakow (n=547). The COX-2 promoter region was genotyped for the G-765C polymorphism. Ex vivo production of prostaglandin E2 and prostaglandin D2 by peripheral blood monocytes was measured.

    Results: In the 2 asthmatic groups, the G-765C allele frequency was similar (AIA, 0.18; ATA, 0.19) and did not differ from that of controls (0.17). In asthmatic women, but not in men, CC homozygotes were overrepresented compared with controls (odds ratio, 3.08; 95% CI, 1.35-6.63; P=.01). There was no relationship between genotype and FEV1, serum IgE, blood eosinophil count, or duration of the disease. In AIA but not in ATA patients, CC homozygosity was associated with more severe course of the disease, as reflected by need for oral corticotherapy. Production of 2 prostaglandins by monocytes was more than 10-fold higher in CC than in GG homozygotes, and the magnitude of this difference was not changed by LPS stimulation.

    Conclusion: In asthma, the COX-2 -765C homozygosity is associated with female sex. The CC homozygosity has functional effects resulting in increased capacity of monocytes to produce prostaglandins.

    The Journal of allergy and clinical immunology 2004;114;2;248-53

  • Phosphorylation of Y845 on the epidermal growth factor receptor mediates binding to the mitochondrial protein cytochrome c oxidase subunit II.

    Boerner JL, Demory ML, Silva C and Parsons SJ

    Department of Microbiology and Cancer Center, University of Virginia Health System, Charlottesville, VA 22908, USA.

    When co-overexpressed, the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and c-Src cooperate to cause synergistic increases in EGF-induced DNA synthesis, soft agar colony growth, and tumor formation in nude mice. This synergy is dependent upon c-Src-mediated phosphorylation of a unique tyrosine on the EGFR, namely, tyrosine 845 (Y845). Phenylalanine substitution of Y845 (Y845F) was found to inhibit EGF-induced DNA synthesis without affecting the catalytic activity of the receptor or its ability to phosphorylate Shc or activate mitogen-activated protein kinase. These results suggest that synergism may occur through alternate signaling pathways mediated by phosphorylated Y845 (pY845). One such pathway involves the transcription factor Stat5b. Here we describe another pathway that involves cytochrome c oxidase subunit II (CoxII). CoxII was identified as a specific binding partner of a pY845-containing peptide in a phage display screen. EGF-dependent binding of CoxII to the wild type but not to the mutant Y845F-EGFR was confirmed by coimmunoprecipitation experiments. This association also required the kinase activity of c-Src. Confocal microscopy, as well as biochemical fractionation, indicated that the EGFR translocates to the mitochondria after EGF stimulation, where it colocalizes with CoxII. Such translocation required the catalytic activity of the receptor but not phosphorylation of Y845. However, ectopic expression of the Y845F-EGFR prevented the EGF from protecting MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells from adriamycin-induced apoptosis, whereas two mutants of Stat5b, a dominant-interfering mutant (DNstat5b) and a tyrosine mutation at 699 (Y699F-Stat5b) did not. Taken together, these data suggest that, through the ability of EGFR to translocate to the mitochondria, the binding of proteins such as CoxII to pY845 on the EGFR may positively regulate survival pathways that contribute to oncogenesis.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: F32 CA093028, F32-CA93028, R01 CA071449, R01-CA71449

    Molecular and cellular biology 2004;24;16;7059-71

  • Single nucleotide polymorphisms over the entire mtDNA genome that increase the power of forensic testing in Caucasians.

    Coble MD, Just RS, O'Callaghan JE, Letmanyi IH, Peterson CT, Irwin JA and Parsons TJ

    The Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory, Building 101, 1413 Research Blvd., Rockville, Maryland 20850, USA.

    We have sequenced the entire mtDNA genome (mtGenome) of 241 individuals who match 1 of 18 common European Caucasian HV1/HV2 types, to identify sites that permit additional forensic discrimination. We found that over the entire mtGenome even individuals with the same HV1/HV2 type rarely match. Restricting attention to sites that are neutral with respect to phenotypic expression, we have selected eight panels of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) sites that are useful for additional discrimination. These panels were selected to be suitable for multiplex SNP typing assays, with 7-11 sites per panel. The panels are specific for one or more of the common HV1/HV2 types (or closely related types), permitting a directed approach that conserves limiting case specimen extracts while providing a maximal chance for additional discrimination. Discrimination provided by the panels reduces the frequency of the most common type in the European Caucasian population from approximately 7% to approximately 2%, and the 18 common types we analyzed are resolved to 105 different types, 55 of which are seen only once.

    International journal of legal medicine 2004;118;3;137-46

  • Genotyping Parkinson disease-associated mitochondrial polymorphisms.

    Jiang Y, Ellis T and Greenlee AR

    National Farm Medicine Center, Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation, Marshfield, Wisconsin 54449, USA.

    Objective: The purpose of this study was to establish a system for rapidly detecting single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) using hybridization probes and melting temperature (T(m)) analysis. This technology should prove useful for population-based studies on the interaction between genetic factors and environmental exposures and the risk of Parkinson disease (PD).

    Methods: Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) was extracted from whole blood. Rapid polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and melting curve analyses were performed with primers and fluorochrome-labeled probes on a LightCycler (Roche Molecular Biochemical, Mannheim, Germany). Genotyping of 10 SNPs in 15 subjects was based on the analysis of allele-specific T(m) of detection probes. The results of melting curve analyses were verified by sequencing all 150 PCR products.

    Results: Real-time monitoring showed optimal PCR amplification of each mtDNA fragment. The nucleotide changes at positions 1719, 4580, 7028, 8251, 9055, 10398, 12308, 13368, 13708, and 16391 from wild-type to mutant genotype resulted in 6.51, 8.29, 3.26, 7.82, 4.79, 2.84, 2.73, 9.04, 8.53, and 9.52 degrees C declines in T(m) of the detection probes, respectively. Genotyping of all 150 samples was verified by 100% correspondence with the results of sequencing. Fourteen subjects were haplogrouped by combining results for all 10 SNPs.

    Conclusion: A rapid and reliable detection system for identifying mitochondrial polymorphisms and haplotypes was developed based on hybridization probe technology. This method may be suitable for mitochondrial genotyping of samples from large-scale epidemiology studies, and may prove useful for exploring the molecular etiopathogenesis of PD, identifying markers of genetic susceptibility, and protecting susceptible individuals from PD.

    Funded by: NIOSH CDC HHS: 5U50 OH007543-02

    Clinical medicine & research 2004;2;2;99-106

  • Cytochrome c oxidase subassemblies in fibroblast cultures from patients carrying mutations in COX10, SCO1, or SURF1.

    Williams SL, Valnot I, Rustin P and Taanman JW

    University Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School, University College London, London NW3 2PF, United Kingdom.

    Cytochrome c oxidase contains two redox-active copper centers (Cu(A) and Cu(B)) and two redox-active heme A moieties. Assembly of the enzyme relies on several assembly factors in addition to the constituent subunits and prosthetic groups. We studied fibroblast cultures from patients carrying mutations in the assembly factors COX10, SCO1, or SURF1. COX10 is involved in heme A biosynthesis. SCO1 is required for formation of the Cu(A) center. The function of SURF1 is unknown. Immunoblot analysis of native gels demonstrated severely decreased levels of holoenzyme in the patient cultures compared with controls. In addition, the blots revealed the presence of five subassemblies: three subassemblies involving the core subunit MTCO1 but apparently no other subunits; a subassembly containing subunits MTCO1, COX4, and COX5A; and a subassembly containing at least subunits MTCO1, MTCO2, MTCO3, COX4, and COX5A. As some of the subassemblies correspond to known assembly intermediates of human cytochrome c oxidase, we think that these subassemblies are probably assembly intermediates that accumulate in patient cells. The MTCO1.COX4.COX5A subassembly was not detected in COX10-deficient cells, which suggests that heme A incorporation into MTCO1 occurs prior to association of MTCO1 with COX4 and COX5A. SCO1-deficient cells contained accumulated levels of the MTCO1.COX4.COX5A subassembly, suggesting that MTCO2 associates with the MTCO1.COX4.COX5A subassembly after the Cu(A) center of MTCO2 is formed. Assembly in SURF1-deficient cells appears to stall at the same stage as in SCO1-deficient cells, pointing to a role for SURF1 in promoting the association of MTCO2 with the MTCO1.COX4.COX5A subassembly.

    The Journal of biological chemistry 2004;279;9;7462-9

  • Lineage-specific selection in human mtDNA: lack of polymorphisms in a segment of MTND5 gene in haplogroup J.

    Moilanen JS, Finnila S and Majamaa K

    Biocenter and Department of Neurology, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.

    Human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is a nonrecombining genome that codes for 13 subunits of the mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation system, 2 rRNAs, and 22 tRNAs. Mutations have accumulated sequentially in mtDNA lineages that diverged tens of thousands of years ago. The genes in mtDNA are subject to different functional constraints and are therefore expected to evolve at different rates, but the rank order of these rates should be the same in all lineages of a phylogeny. Previous studies have indicated, however, that specific regions of mtDNA may have experienced different histories of selection in different lineages, possibly because of lineage-specific interactions or environmental factors such as climate. We report here on a survey for lineage-specific patterns of nucleotide polymorphism in human mtDNA. We calculated molecular polymorphism indices and neutrality tests for classes of functional sites and genes in 837 human mtDNA sequences, compared the results between continent-specific mtDNA lineages, and used two sliding window methods to identify differences in the patterns of polymorphism between haplogroups. A general correlation between nucleotide position and the level of nucleotide polymorphism was identified in the coding region of the mitochondrial genome. Nucleotide diversity in the protein-coding sequence of mtDNA was generally not much higher than that found for many genes in nuclear DNA. A comparison of nonsynonymous/synonymous rate ratios in the 13 protein-coding genes suggested differences in the relative levels of selection between haplogroups, including the European haplogroup clusters. Interestingly, a segment of the MTND5 gene was found to be almost void of segregating sites and nonsynonymous mutations in haplogroup J, which has been associated with susceptibility to certain complex diseases. Our results suggest that there are haplogroup-specific differences in the intensity of selection against particular regions of the mitochondrial genome, indicating that some mutations may be non-neutral within specific phylogenetic lineages but neutral within others.

    Molecular biology and evolution 2003;20;12;2132-42

  • Mitochondrial DNA transit between West Asia and North Africa inferred from U6 phylogeography.

    Maca-Meyer N, González AM, Pestano J, Flores C, Larruga JM and Cabrera VM

    Departamento de Genética, Facultad de Biología, Universidad de La Laguna, Tenerife, SPAIN. nmacame@ull.es

    Background: World-wide phylogeographic distribution of human complete mitochondrial DNA sequences suggested a West Asian origin for the autochthonous North African lineage U6. We report here a more detailed analysis of this lineage, unraveling successive expansions that affected not only Africa but neighboring regions such as the Near East, the Iberian Peninsula and the Canary Islands.

    Results: Divergence times, geographic origin and expansions of the U6 mitochondrial DNA clade, have been deduced from the analysis of 14 complete U6 sequences, and 56 different haplotypes, characterized by hypervariable segment sequences and RFLPs.

    Conclusions: The most probable origin of the proto-U6 lineage was the Near East. Around 30,000 years ago it spread to North Africa where it represents a signature of regional continuity. Subgroup U6a reflects the first African expansion from the Maghrib returning to the east in Paleolithic times. Derivative clade U6a1 signals a posterior movement from East Africa back to the Maghrib and the Near East. This migration coincides with the probable Afroasiatic linguistic expansion. U6b and U6c clades, restricted to West Africa, had more localized expansions. U6b probably reached the Iberian Peninsula during the Capsian diffusion in North Africa. Two autochthonous derivatives of these clades (U6b1 and U6c1) indicate the arrival of North African settlers to the Canarian Archipelago in prehistoric times, most probably due to the Saharan desiccation. The absence of these Canarian lineages nowadays in Africa suggests important demographic movements in the western area of this Continent.

    BMC genetics 2003;4;15

  • Phylogeny of east Asian mitochondrial DNA lineages inferred from complete sequences.

    Kong QP, Yao YG, Sun C, Bandelt HJ, Zhu CL and Zhang YP

    Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Evolution, Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, Yunnan, China.

    The now-emerging mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) population genomics provides information for reconstructing a well-resolved mtDNA phylogeny and for discerning the phylogenetic status of the subcontinentally specific haplogroups. Although several major East Asian mtDNA haplogroups have been identified in studies elsewhere, some of the most basal haplogroups, as well as numerous minor subhaplogroups, were not yet determined or fully characterized. To fill the lacunae, we selected 48 mtDNAs from >2,000 samples across China for complete sequencing that cover virtually all (sub)haplogroups discernible to date in East Asia. This East Asian mtDNA phylogeny can henceforth serve as a solid basis for phylogeographic analyses of mtDNAs, as well as for studies of mitochondrial diseases in East and Southeast Asia.

    American journal of human genetics 2003;73;3;671-6

  • Mitochondrial genome variation and evolutionary history of Australian and New Guinean aborigines.

    Ingman M and Gyllensten U

    Department of Genetics and Pathology, Section of Medical Genetics, Rudbeck Laboratory, University of Uppsala, S-751 85 Uppsala, Sweden. max.ingman@genpat.uu.se

    To study the evolutionary history of the Australian and New Guinean indigenous peoples, we analyzed 101 complete mitochondrial genomes including populations from Australia and New Guinea as well as from Africa, India, Europe, Asia, Melanesia, and Polynesia. The genetic diversity of the Australian mitochondrial sequences is remarkably high and is similar to that found across Asia. This is in contrast to the pattern seen in previously described Y-chromosome data where an Australia-specific haplotype was found at high frequency. The mitochondrial genome data indicate that Australia was colonized between 40 and 70 thousand years ago, either by a single migration from a heterogeneous source population or by multiple movements of smaller groups occurring over a period of time. Some Australian and New Guinea sequences form clades, suggesting the possibility of a joint colonization and/or admixture between the two regions.

    Genome research 2003;13;7;1600-6

  • A study to survey susceptible genetic factors responsible for troglitazone-associated hepatotoxicity in Japanese patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

    Watanabe I, Tomita A, Shimizu M, Sugawara M, Yasumo H, Koishi R, Takahashi T, Miyoshi K, Nakamura K, Izumi T, Matsushita Y, Furukawa H, Haruyama H and Koga T

    Regulatory Affairs Department, Sankyo Co, Ltd, Tokyo, Japan.

    Troglitazone is a 2,4-thiazolidinedione antidiabetic agent with insulin-sensitizing activities. This agent had been used efficiently in a large number of patients but was withdrawn from the market in March 2000 because of its association with idiosyncratic hepatotoxicity. To address the susceptible genetic factors responsible for the hepatotoxicity associated with this agent, we performed a genetic polymorphic analysis by a target gene approach in troglitazone-treated Japanese patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

    Methods: One hundred ten patients treated with troglitazone were recruited into this study. The case patients (n = 25) were recruited through medical professionals who had previously reported abnormal increases in the levels of ALT or AST among their patients. The control patients (n = 85) were recruited through physicians prescribing troglitazone. For statistical accuracy, efforts were made to maximize the size of the case group. Genotype analysis was performed in 68 polymorphic sites of 51 candidate genes related to drug metabolism, apoptosis, roduction and elimination of reactive oxygen species, and signal transduction pathways of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma 2 and insulin.

    Results: The strong correlation with transaminase elevations was observed in the combined glutathione-S-transferase GSTT1-GSTM1 null genotype (odds ratio, 3.692; 95% confidence interval, 1.354-10.066; P =.008).

    Conclusions: The double null mutation of GSTT1 and GSTM1 might influence troglitazone-associated abnormal increases of liver enzyme levels.

    Clinical pharmacology and therapeutics 2003;73;5;435-55

  • Natural selection shaped regional mtDNA variation in humans.

    Mishmar D, Ruiz-Pesini E, Golik P, Macaulay V, Clark AG, Hosseini S, Brandon M, Easley K, Chen E, Brown MD, Sukernik RI, Olckers A and Wallace DC

    Center for Molecular and Mitochondrial Medicine and Genetics, University of California, Irvine, 92697-3940, USA.

    Human mtDNA shows striking regional variation, traditionally attributed to genetic drift. However, it is not easy to account for the fact that only two mtDNA lineages (M and N) left Africa to colonize Eurasia and that lineages A, C, D, and G show a 5-fold enrichment from central Asia to Siberia. As an alternative to drift, natural selection might have enriched for certain mtDNA lineages as people migrated north into colder climates. To test this hypothesis we analyzed 104 complete mtDNA sequences from all global regions and lineages. African mtDNA variation did not significantly deviate from the standard neutral model, but European, Asian, and Siberian plus Native American variations did. Analysis of amino acid substitution mutations (nonsynonymous, Ka) versus neutral mutations (synonymous, Ks) (kaks) for all 13 mtDNA protein-coding genes revealed that the ATP6 gene had the highest amino acid sequence variation of any human mtDNA gene, even though ATP6 is one of the more conserved mtDNA proteins. Comparison of the kaks ratios for each mtDNA gene from the tropical, temperate, and arctic zones revealed that ATP6 was highly variable in the mtDNAs from the arctic zone, cytochrome b was particularly variable in the temperate zone, and cytochrome oxidase I was notably more variable in the tropics. Moreover, multiple amino acid changes found in ATP6, cytochrome b, and cytochrome oxidase I appeared to be functionally significant. From these analyses we conclude that selection may have played a role in shaping human regional mtDNA variation and that one of the selective influences was climate.

    Funded by: FIC NIH HHS: R03 TW001366, TW01175, TW01366; NHLBI NIH HHS: HL64017; NIA NIH HHS: AG13154, R01 AG013154; NINDS NIH HHS: NS21328, NS37167, R01 NS021328, R01 NS037167, R56 NS037167

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 2003;100;1;171-6

  • Induction or suppression of expression of cytochrome C oxidase subunit II by heregulin beta 1 in human mammary epithelial cells is dependent on the levels of ErbB2 expression.

    Sun Y, Lin H, Zhu Y, Ma C, Ye J and Luo J

    Department of Microbiology, Immunology & Cell Biology, West Virginia University School of Medicine, Morgantown, West Virginia 26506-9177, USA. jluo@hsc.wvu.edu

    The ErbB family of receptor kinases is composed of four members: epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR/ErbB1), ErbB2/neu, ErbB3, and ErbB4. Amplification of the ErbB2/neu is found in about 30% of breast cancer patients and is associated with a poor prognosis. Heregulin (HRG) activates the ErbB2 via induction of heterodimerization with ErbB3 and ErbB4 receptors. With suppression subtractive hybridization, we demonstrated that the expression of cytochrome c oxidase subunit II (COXII) is HRG-responsive. Two nontransformed human mammary epithelial cell lines, the HB2 and the HB2(ErbB2) (the HB2 engineered to overexpress ErbB2), displayed an opposite response to HRG-mediated regulation. HRG upregulated mRNA expression of COXII in the HB2 cells, but suppressed COXII expression in the HB2(ErbB2) cells. A human breast cancer cell line (T47D), which expresses ErbB2 at a level similar to that of the HB2 cells, also responded to HRG by increasing COXII mRNA levels. Therefore, HRG regulation of COXII expression depends on the levels of ErbB2 expression. Furthermore, the expression of COXII was inversely correlated to the levels of ErbB2, i.e., the cells overexpressing ErbB2 exhibited lower COXII levels. HRG-evoked signal transduction differed between the cells with normal ErbB expression and the cells overexpressing ErbB2. The activation of both ERK and PI3-K was essential for HRG regulation of COXII, i.e., blockage of either pathway eliminated HRG-mediated alteration. This is the first report demonstrating that the expression of mitochondria-encoded COXII is HRG-responsive. The levels of ErbB2 expression are decisive for the diverse biological activities of HRG.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA90385; NIAAA NIH HHS: AA12968

    Journal of cellular physiology 2002;192;2;225-33

  • Mitochondrial genome diversity of Native Americans supports a single early entry of founder populations into America.

    Silva WA, Bonatto SL, Holanda AJ, Ribeiro-Dos-Santos AK, Paixão BM, Goldman GH, Abe-Sandes K, Rodriguez-Delfin L, Barbosa M, Paçó-Larson ML, Petzl-Erler ML, Valente V, Santos SE and Zago MA

    Center for Cell Therapy and Regional Blood Center, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, Brazil.

    There is general agreement that the Native American founder populations migrated from Asia into America through Beringia sometime during the Pleistocene, but the hypotheses concerning the ages and the number of these migrations and the size of the ancestral populations are surrounded by controversy. DNA sequence variations of several regions of the genome of Native Americans, especially in the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region, have been studied as a tool to help answer these questions. However, the small number of nucleotides studied and the nonclocklike rate of mtDNA control-region evolution impose several limitations to these results. Here we provide the sequence analysis of a continuous region of 8.8 kb of the mtDNA outside the D-loop for 40 individuals, 30 of whom are Native Americans whose mtDNA belongs to the four founder haplogroups. Haplogroups A, B, and C form monophyletic clades, but the five haplogroup D sequences have unstable positions and usually do not group together. The high degree of similarity in the nucleotide diversity and time of differentiation (i.e., approximately 21,000 years before present) of these four haplogroups support a common origin for these sequences and suggest that the populations who harbor them may also have a common history. Additional evidence supports the idea that this age of differentiation coincides with the process of colonization of the New World and supports the hypothesis of a single and early entry of the ancestral Asian population into the Americas.

    American journal of human genetics 2002;71;1;187-92

  • Ageing muscle: clonal expansions of mitochondrial DNA point mutations and deletions cause focal impairment of mitochondrial function.

    Fayet G, Jansson M, Sternberg D, Moslemi AR, Blondy P, Lombès A, Fardeau M and Oldfors A

    Inserm U523, Institut de Myologie, Hôpital Pitié-Salpêtrière, Paris, France.

    Although mitochondrial DNA deletions have been shown to accumulate in cytochrome c oxidase deficient muscle fibres of ageing muscle, this has not been demonstrated for point mutations. In this study, we investigated the occurrence of mitochondrial DNA alterations (point mutations and deletions) in cytochrome c oxidase deficient muscle fibres from 14 individuals, without muscle disease, aged 69-82 years. Immunohistochemical investigation showed that the majority of the cytochrome c oxidase deficient muscle fibres expressed reduced levels of subunit II of cytochrome c oxidase, which is encoded by mitochondrial DNA, whereas there was normal or increased expression of subunit IV of cytochrome c oxidase, which is encoded by nuclear DNA. This pattern is typical for mitochondrial DNA mutations causing impaired mitochondrial translation. Single muscle fibres (109 cytochrome c oxidase deficient and 109 normal fibres) were dissected and their DNA extracted. Mitochondrial DNA point mutations were searched for in five tRNA genes by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis while deletions were looked for by polymerase chain reaction amplification. High levels of clonally expanded point mutations were identified in eight cytochrome c oxidase deficient fibres but in none of the normal ones. They included the previously described pathogenic tRNALeu(UUR)A3243G and tRNALysA8344G mutations and three original mutations: tRNAMetT4460C, tRNAMetG4421A, and a 3-bp deletion in the tRNALeu(UUR) gene. Four different large-scale mitochondrial DNA deletions were identified in seven cytochrome c oxidase deficient fibres and in one of the normal ones. There was no evidence of depletion of mitochondrial DNA by in situ hybridisation experiments. Our data show that mitochondrial DNA point mutations, as well as large-scale deletions, are associated with cytochrome c oxidase deficient muscle fibre segments in ageing. Their focal accumulation causes significant impairment of mitochondrial function in individual cells in spite of low overall levels of mitochondrial DNA mutations in muscle.

    Neuromuscular disorders : NMD 2002;12;5;484-93

  • Increased incidence of mitochondrial cytochrome c-oxidase gene mutations in patients with myelodysplastic syndromes.

    Reddy PL, Shetty VT, Dutt D, York A, Dar S, Mundle SD, Allampallam K, Alvi S, Galili N, Saberwal GS, Anthwal S, Shaikh M, Suleman S, Kamal SY and Raza A

    Rush Cancer Institute, Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center, Chicago, IL 60612-3515, USA.

    Mitochondria (mt) play an important role in both apoptosis and haem synthesis. The present study was conducted to determine DNA mutations in mitochondrial encoded cytochrome c-oxidase I and II genes. Bone marrow (BM) biopsy and aspirate, peripheral blood (PB) and buccal smear samples were collected from 20 myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) patients and 10 age-matched controls. Cytochrome c-oxidase I (CO I) and II (CO II) genes were amplified using polymerase chain reaction and sequenced. CO I mutations were found in 13/20 MDS patients and the CO II gene in 2/10 normal and 12/20 MDS samples, irrespective of MDS subtype. Mutations were substitutional, deletional and insertional. CO I mutations were most common at nucleotide positions 7264 (25%) and 7289 (15%), and CO II mutations were most common at nucleotide positions 7595 (40%) and 7594 (30%), suggesting the presence of potential 'hot-spots'. Mutations were not found in buccal smears of MDS patients and were significantly higher in MDS samples compared with age-matched controls in all cell fractions (P < 0.05), with bone marrow high-density fraction (BMHDF) showing a higher mutation rate than other fractions (P < 0.05). MDS marrows showed higher levels of apoptosis than normal controls (P < 0.05), and apoptosis in BMHDF was directly related to cytochrome c-oxidase I gene mutations (P < 0.05). Electron microscopy revealed apoptosis affecting all haematopoietic lineages with highly abnormal, iron-laden mitochondria. These results suggest a role for mt-DNA mutations in the excessive apoptosis and resulting cytopenias of MDS patients.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: P01CA 75606

    British journal of haematology 2002;116;3;564-75

  • Phylogenetic network for European mtDNA.

    Finnilä S, Lehtonen MS and Majamaa K

    Departments of Neurology and Medical Biochemistry, and Biocenter, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.

    The sequence in the first hypervariable segment (HVS-I) of the control region has been used as a source of evolutionary information in most phylogenetic analyses of mtDNA. Population genetic inference would benefit from a better understanding of the variation in the mtDNA coding region, but, thus far, complete mtDNA sequences have been rare. We determined the nucleotide sequence in the coding region of mtDNA from 121 Finns, by conformation-sensitive gel electrophoresis and subsequent sequencing and by direct sequencing of the D loop. Furthermore, 71 sequences from our previous reports were included, so that the samples represented all the mtDNA haplogroups present in the Finnish population. We found a total of 297 variable sites in the coding region, which allowed the compilation of unambiguous phylogenetic networks. The D loop harbored 104 variable sites, and, in most cases, these could be localized within the coding-region networks, without discrepancies. Interestingly, many homoplasies were detected in the coding region. Nucleotide variation in the rRNA and tRNA genes was 6%, and that in the third nucleotide positions of structural genes amounted to 22% of that in the HVS-I. The complete networks enabled the relationships between the mtDNA haplogroups to be analyzed. Phylogenetic networks based on the entire coding-region sequence in mtDNA provide a rich source for further population genetic studies, and complete sequences make it easier to differentiate between disease-causing mutations and rare polymorphisms.

    American journal of human genetics 2001;68;6;1475-84

  • Major genomic mitochondrial lineages delineate early human expansions.

    Maca-Meyer N, González AM, Larruga JM, Flores C and Cabrera VM

    Department of Genetics, Faculty of Biology, University of La Laguna, Tenerife, 38271, Spain. nmacame@ull.es

    Background: The phylogeographic distribution of human mitochondrial DNA variations allows a genetic approach to the study of modern Homo sapiens dispersals throughout the world from a female perspective. As a new contribution to this study we have phylogenetically analysed complete mitochondrial DNA(mtDNA) sequences from 42 human lineages, representing major clades with known geographic assignation.

    Results: We show the relative relationships among the 42 lineages and present more accurate temporal calibrations than have been previously possible to give new perspectives as how modern humans spread in the Old World.

    Conclusions: The first detectable expansion occurred around 59,000-69,000 years ago from Africa, independently colonizing western Asia and India and, following this southern route, swiftly reaching east Asia. Within Africa, this expansion did not replace but mixed with older lineages detectable today only in Africa. Around 39,000-52,000 years ago, the western Asian branch spread radially, bringing Caucasians to North Africa and Europe, also reaching India, and expanding to north and east Asia. More recent migrations have entangled but not completely erased these primitive footprints of modern human expansions.

    BMC genetics 2001;2;13

  • Mitochondrial genome variation and the origin of modern humans.

    Ingman M, Kaessmann H, Pääbo S and Gyllensten U

    Department of Genetics and Pathology, Section of Medical Genetics, University of Uppsala, Sweden.

    The analysis of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) has been a potent tool in our understanding of human evolution, owing to characteristics such as high copy number, apparent lack of recombination, high substitution rate and maternal mode of inheritance. However, almost all studies of human evolution based on mtDNA sequencing have been confined to the control region, which constitutes less than 7% of the mitochondrial genome. These studies are complicated by the extreme variation in substitution rate between sites, and the consequence of parallel mutations causing difficulties in the estimation of genetic distance and making phylogenetic inferences questionable. Most comprehensive studies of the human mitochondrial molecule have been carried out through restriction-fragment length polymorphism analysis, providing data that are ill suited to estimations of mutation rate and therefore the timing of evolutionary events. Here, to improve the information obtained from the mitochondrial molecule for studies of human evolution, we describe the global mtDNA diversity in humans based on analyses of the complete mtDNA sequence of 53 humans of diverse origins. Our mtDNA data, in comparison with those of a parallel study of the Xq13.3 region in the same individuals, provide a concurrent view on human evolution with respect to the age of modern humans.

    Nature 2000;408;6813;708-13

  • Reanalysis and revision of the Cambridge reference sequence for human mitochondrial DNA.

    Andrews RM, Kubacka I, Chinnery PF, Lightowlers RN, Turnbull DM and Howell N

    Nature genetics 1999;23;2;147

  • The mechanisms of death of an erythroleukemic cell line by p53: involvement of the microtubule and mitochondria.

    Kato MV

    Molecular Oncology Laboratory, Tsukuba Life Science Center, The Institute of Physical and Chemical Research (RIKEN), Ibaraki, Japan. mkato@rtc.riken.go.jp

    A murine erythroleukemic cell line (1-2-3) which expresses only the temperature-sensitive mutant p53 gene (Ala-to-Val substitution at codon 135) was established. These cells showed typical characteristics of apoptosis, when they were cultured at 32 degrees C. In this process, p53 recovered the wild-type p53 function and the expression of the p21 (waf1/cip1/sdi1), cyclin G1 and gadd45 genes was increased. However, no significant changes were detected in the expression of the mdm2, bcl-2, bax, fas and fasl genes, suggesting the existence of other genes associated with apoptosis. Genes up-regulated by p53 were screened by the mRNA differential display method. One of the up-regulated genes was identified as the elongation factor 1 alpha (EF-1 alpha) gene. EF-1 alpha is also a microtubule-severing protein. Upon the temperature-shift, the cells developed the morphology and the localization of alpha-tubulin similar to those of the cells treated with vincristine, a drug that affects microtubules. The microtubule-severing associated with up-regulation of EF-1 alpha by p53 may be a cause of the cell death. On the other hand, the function of cyclin G1 is not so clear despite the fact that 1-2-3 cells showed a significant increase of the cyclin G1 gene during the early stage of apoptosis. The yeast two-hybrid system was used to identify cyclin G1-associated proteins. One is a cytochrome c (Cyt c) oxidase subunit II (COXII). Cyclin G1 and COXII were co-immunoprecipitated from an extract of human osteosarcoma cell line that expressed high levels of cyclin G1. COX activity was also increased by temperature-shift in this cell line. The pattern of changes in COX activity was closely reflected by the expression of the cyclin G1 gene. Cyclin G1 and COXII associate physically with each other in vivo and that activation of COXII by binding to cyclin G1 upregulated by p53 may be associated with apoptosis. These two new pathways, p53-EF-1 alpha-microtubule-severing (-distortion of cytoskeleton) and p53-cyclin G1-COXII (-CytC, ATP-caspase-3 activation), may cooperate to induce apoptosis in this cell line.

    Leukemia & lymphoma 1999;33;1-2;181-6

  • Somatic mutations of the mitochondrial genome in human colorectal tumours.

    Polyak K, Li Y, Zhu H, Lengauer C, Willson JK, Markowitz SD, Trush MA, Kinzler KW and Vogelstein B

    The Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland 21231, USA.

    Alterations of oxidative phosphorylation in tumour cells were originally believed to have a causative role in cancerous growth. More recently, mitochondria have again received attention with regards to neoplasia, largely because of their role in apoptosis and other aspects of tumour biology. The mitochondrial genome is particularly susceptible to mutations because of the high level of reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation in this organelle, coupled with a low level of DNA repair. However, no detailed analysis of mitochondrial DNA in human tumours has yet been reported. In this study, we analysed the complete mtDNA genome of ten human colorectal cancer cell lines by sequencing and found mutations in seven (70%). The majority of mutations were transitions at purines, consistent with an ROS-related derivation. The mutations were somatic, and those evaluated occurred in the primary tumour from which the cell line was derived. Most of the mutations were homoplasmic, indicating that the mutant genome was dominant at the intracellular and intercellular levels. We showed that mitochondria can rapidly become homogeneous in colorectal cancer cells using cell fusions. These findings provide the first examples of homoplasmic mutations in the mtDNA of tumour cells and have potential implications for the abnormal metabolic and apoptotic processes in cancer.

    Funded by: NCI NIH HHS: CA 43460, CA 57345, CA 67409; ...

    Nature genetics 1998;20;3;291-3

  • Recent African origin of modern humans revealed by complete sequences of hominoid mitochondrial DNAs.

    Horai S, Hayasaka K, Kondo R, Tsugane K and Takahata N

    Department of Human Genetics, National Institute of Genetics, Mishima, Japan.

    We analyzed the complete mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences of three humans (African, European, and Japanese), three African apes (common and pygmy chimpanzees, and gorilla), and one orangutan in an attempt to estimate most accurately the substitution rates and divergence times of hominoid mtDNAs. Nonsynonymous substitutions and substitutions in RNA genes have accumulated with an approximately clock-like regularity. From these substitutions and under the assumption that the orangutan and African apes diverged 13 million years ago, we obtained a divergence time for humans and chimpanzees of 4.9 million years. This divergence time permitted calibration of the synonymous substitution rate (3.89 x 10(-8)/site per year). To obtain the substitution rate in the displacement (D)-loop region, we compared the three human mtDNAs and measured the relative abundance of substitutions in the D-loop region and at synonymous sites. The estimated substitution rate in the D-loop region was 7.00 x 10(-8)/site per year. Using both synonymous and D-loop substitutions, we inferred the age of the last common ancestor of the human mtDNAs as 143,000 +/- 18,000 years. The shallow ancestry of human mtDNAs, together with the observation that the African sequence is the most diverged among humans, strongly supports the recent African origin of modern humans, Homo sapiens sapiens.

    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 1995;92;2;532-6

  • Mitochondrial COII sequences and modern human origins.

    Ruvolo M, Zehr S, von Dornum M, Pan D, Chang B and Lin J

    The aim of this study is to measure human mitochondrial sequence variability in the relatively slowly evolving mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase subunit II (COII) and to estimate when the human common ancestral mitochondrial type existed. New COII gene sequences were determined for five humans (Homo sapiens), including some of the most mitochondrially divergent humans known; for two pygmy chimpanzees (Pan paniscus); and for a common chimpanzee (P. troglodytes). COII sequences were analyzed with those from another relatively slowly evolving mitochondrial region (ND4-5). From class 1 (third codon position) sequence data, a relative divergence date for the human mitochondrial ancestor is estimated as 1/27 th of the human-chimpanzee divergence time. If it is assumed that humans and chimpanzees diverged 6 Mya, this places a human mitochondrial ancestor at 222,000 years, significantly different from 1 Myr (the presumed time of an H. erectus emergence from Africa). The mean coalescent time estimated from all 1,580 sites of combined mitochondrial data, when a 6-Mya human-chimpanzee divergence is assumed, is 298,000 years, with 95% confidence interval of 129,000-536,000 years. Neither estimate is compatible with a 1-Myr-old human mitochondrial ancestor. The mitochondrial DNA sequence data from COII and ND4-5 regions therefore do not support this multiregional hypothesis for the emergence of modern humans.

    Molecular biology and evolution 1993;10;6;1115-35

  • Differentiation of HT-29 human colonic adenocarcinoma cells correlates with increased expression of mitochondrial RNA: effects of trehalose on cell growth and maturation.

    Lu X, Walker T, MacManus JP and Seligy VL

    Institute of Biological Sciences, National Research Council of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario.

    The HT-29 human adenocarcinoma cell line has been used extensively in the study of colonic cell differentiation and colon cancer. We report here that substitution of glucose with trehalose (alpha-D-glucopyranosyl-alpha-D-glucopyranoside) depresses growth and promotes mucin-producing, goblet-like maturation of HT-29. An initial characterization of this process was made by analyzing several cDNA clones whose RNA templates were differentially expressed at elevated levels in cells grown in trehalose-containing medium. Seven of the 9 clones examined corresponded to 6 mitochondrial genes whose expression levels, relative to those from glucose-grown cells, ranged from approximately 3-fold for 16S rRNA to 8-23-fold for NADH dehydrogenase subunit 4. On the other hand, levels of mitochondrial DNA copy, measured by using NADH dehydrogenase subunit 4 cDNA as probe, were shown to be unaffected by trehalose treatment. Elevation of cellular NADH dehydrogenase subunit 4 RNA in HT-29 cultures grown in medium containing different components (sodium butyrate, galactose, no-sugar, glucose, cellobiose) generally correlated with depressed growth levels and specifically with increased numbers of mucin-producing cells present. Like butyrate, the sugar, trehalose, is an effective inducer of HT-29 differentiation, and may prove useful as a dietary therapeutic, and as a probe for elucidating mitochondrial involvement in colonic cell differentiation and transformation.

    Cancer research 1992;52;13;3718-25

  • Dinucleotide repeat in the human mitochondrial D-loop.

    Bodenteich A, Mitchell LG, Polymeropoulos MH and Merril CR

    Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics, National Institute of Mental Health, Washington, DC 20032.

    Human molecular genetics 1992;1;2;140

  • Normal variants of human mitochondrial DNA and translation products: the building of a reference data base.

    Marzuki S, Noer AS, Lertrit P, Thyagarajan D, Kapsa R, Utthanaphol P and Byrne E

    Department of Biochemistry, Monash University, Clayton, Victoria, Australia.

    A good standard reference for the highly polymorphic human mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequence is essential for studies of normal and disease-related nucleotide variants in the mitochondrial genome. A consensus sequence for the human mitochondrial genome has been derived from thirteen unrelated mtDNA sequences. We report 128 nucleotide variants of the human mtDNA sequence, and 62 amino acid variants of the human mitochondrial translation products, observed in the coding region of these mtDNA sequences.

    Human genetics 1991;88;2;139-45

  • Replication-competent human mitochondrial DNA lacking the heavy-strand promoter region.

    Moraes CT, Andreetta F, Bonilla E, Shanske S, DiMauro S and Schon EA

    Department of Genetics and Development, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York, New York 10032.

    We identified two patients with progressive external ophthalmoplegia, a mitochondrial disease, who harbored a population of partially deleted mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) with unusual properties. These molecules were deleted from mtDNA positions 548 to 4,442 and encompassed not only rRNA sequences but the heavy-strand promoter region as well. A 13-bp direct repeat was found flanking the breakpoint precisely, with the repeat at positions 535 to 547 located within the binding site for mitochondrial transcription factor 1 (mtTF1). This is the second mtDNA deletion involving a 13-bp direct repeat reported but is at least 10 times less frequent in the patient population than the former one. In situ hybridization studies showed that transcripts under the control of the light-strand promoter were abundant in muscle fibers with abnormal proliferation of mitochondria, while transcripts directed by the heavy-strand promoter, whether of genes residing inside or outside the deleted region, were not. The efficient transcription from the light-strand promoter implies that the major heavy-and light-strand promoters, although physically close, are functionally independent, confirming previous in vitro studies.

    Funded by: NINDS NIH HHS: NS11766, R01 NS28828

    Molecular and cellular biology 1991;11;3;1631-7

  • Nucleotide sequence of human mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase II cDNA.

    Power MD, Kiefer MC, Barr PJ and Reeves R

    Department of Biochemistry, Athena Neurosciences, Inc., South San Francisco, CA.

    Nucleic acids research 1989;17;16;6734

  • URF6, last unidentified reading frame of human mtDNA, codes for an NADH dehydrogenase subunit.

    Chomyn A, Cleeter MW, Ragan CI, Riley M, Doolittle RF and Attardi G

    The polypeptide encoded in URF6, the last unassigned reading frame of human mitochondrial DNA, has been identified with antibodies to peptides predicted from the DNA sequence. Antibodies prepared against highly purified respiratory chain NADH dehydrogenase from beef heart or against the cytoplasmically synthesized 49-kilodalton iron-sulfur subunit isolated from this enzyme complex, when added to a deoxycholate or a Triton X-100 mitochondrial lysate of HeLa cells, specifically precipitated the URF6 product together with the six other URF products previously identified as subunits of NADH dehydrogenase. These results strongly point to the URF6 product as being another subunit of this enzyme complex. Thus, almost 60% of the protein coding capacity of mammalian mitochondrial DNA is utilized for the assembly of the first enzyme complex of the respiratory chain. The absence of such information in yeast mitochondrial DNA dramatizes the variability in gene content of different mitochondrial genomes.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM-11726

    Science (New York, N.Y.) 1986;234;4776;614-8

  • Seven unidentified reading frames of human mitochondrial DNA encode subunits of the respiratory chain NADH dehydrogenase.

    Attardi G, Chomyn A, Doolittle RF, Mariottini P and Ragan CI

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM-11726

    Cold Spring Harbor symposia on quantitative biology 1986;51 Pt 1;103-14

  • Six unidentified reading frames of human mitochondrial DNA encode components of the respiratory-chain NADH dehydrogenase.

    Chomyn A, Mariottini P, Cleeter MW, Ragan CI, Matsuno-Yagi A, Hatefi Y, Doolittle RF and Attardi G

    The products of six unidentified reading frames of human mitochondrial DNA are precipitated from a mitochondrial lysate by antibodies against highly purified native beef heart NADH-ubiquinone oxidoreductase (complex I). These products are enriched greatly in a human submitochondrial fraction enriched in NADH-Q1 and NADH-K3Fe(CN)6 oxidoreductase activities. We conclude that the six reading frames encode components of the respiratory-chain NADH dehydrogenase.

    Funded by: NIADDK NIH HHS: AM 08126; NIGMS NIH HHS: GM-11726

    Nature 1985;314;6012;592-7

  • Distinctive features of the 5'-terminal sequences of the human mitochondrial mRNAs.

    Montoya J, Ojala D and Attardi G

    The 5'-end proximal sequences of all the putative mRNAs coded for by the heavy strand of HeLa cell mitochondrial DNA have been determined and aligned with the DNA sequence. All these mRNAs start directly at, or very near to, an AUG or AUA triplet, with the exception of one which starts at an AUU. The available evidence indicates that the terminal or subterminal AUGs and AUAs, and possibly also the terminal AUU, are initiator codons for the corresponding polypeptides. In most cases, the individual mRNA coding sequences are flanked on their 5' side by a tRNA gene, without any intervening nucleotide.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM-07616, GM-11726

    Nature 1981;290;5806;465-70

  • Sequence and organization of the human mitochondrial genome.

    Anderson S, Bankier AT, Barrell BG, de Bruijn MH, Coulson AR, Drouin J, Eperon IC, Nierlich DP, Roe BA, Sanger F, Schreier PH, Smith AJ, Staden R and Young IG

    The complete sequence of the 16,569-base pair human mitochondrial genome is presented. The genes for the 12S and 16S rRNAs, 22 tRNAs, cytochrome c oxidase subunits I, II and III, ATPase subunit 6, cytochrome b and eight other predicted protein coding genes have been located. The sequence shows extreme economy in that the genes have none or only a few noncoding bases between them, and in many cases the termination codons are not coded in the DNA but are created post-transcriptionally by polyadenylation of the mRNAs.

    Funded by: NIGMS NIH HHS: GM-00124, GM-21405, GM-25962

    Nature 1981;290;5806;457-65

  • A different genetic code in human mitochondria.

    Barrell BG, Bankier AT and Drouin J

    Comparison of the human mitochrondial DNA sequence of the cytochrome oxidase subunit II gene and the sequence of the corresponding beef heart protein shows that UGA is used as a tryptophan codon and not as a termination codon and suggests that AUA may be a methionine and not an isoleucine codon. The cytochrome oxidase II gene is contiguous at its 5' end with a tRNAAsp gene and there are only 25 bases at its 3' end before a tRNALys gene. These tRNA'S are different from all other known tRNA sequences.

    Nature 1979;282;5735;189-94

Gene lists (9)

Gene List Source Species Name Description Gene count
L00000009 G2C Homo sapiens Human PSD Human orthologues of mouse PSD adapted from Collins et al (2006) 1080
L00000010 G2C Homo sapiens Human mitochondria Human orthologues of mouse mitochondria adapted from Collins et al (2006) 91
L00000011 G2C Homo sapiens Human clathrin Human orthologues of mouse clathrin coated vesicle genes adapted from Collins et al (2006) 150
L00000012 G2C Homo sapiens Human Synaptosome Human orthologues of mouse synaptosome adapted from Collins et al (2006) 152
L00000016 G2C Homo sapiens Human PSP Human orthologues of mouse PSP adapted from Collins et al (2006) 1121
L00000059 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-HUMAN-PSD-CONSENSUS Human cortex PSD consensus 748
L00000061 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-MOUSE-PSD-CONSENSUS Mouse cortex PSD consensus (ortho) 984
L00000069 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-HUMAN-PSD-FULL Human cortex biopsy PSD full list 1461
L00000071 G2C Homo sapiens BAYES-COLLINS-MOUSE-PSD-FULL Mouse cortex PSD full list (ortho) 1556
© G2C 2014. The Genes to Cognition Programme received funding from The Wellcome Trust and the EU FP7 Framework Programmes:
EUROSPIN (FP7-HEALTH-241498), SynSys (FP7-HEALTH-242167) and GENCODYS (FP7-HEALTH-241995).

Cookies Policy | Terms and Conditions. This site is hosted by Edinburgh University and the Genes to Cognition Programme.