1Department of Laboratory Medicine & Pathobiology, University of Toronto, 2Division of Urology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Canada, 3Department of Anatomic Pathology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Canada, 4Biological Sciences, Sunnybrook Research Institute
Quantitative Real Time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) is a rapid and sensitive method to investigate the expression levels of various microRNA (miRNA) molecules in tumor samples. Using this method expression of hundreds of different miRNA molecules can be amplified, quantified, and analyzed from the same cDNA template.
The Solaris qPCR Gene Expression Assays are novel pre-designed qPCR primer/probe combinations designed to simplify the qPCR process without sacrificing the specificity and robustness of the assay.
An accurate, short, sophisticated and cheap method is described that assesses telomere length in multiple tissues and species using qRT-PCR. In addition, we will describe a simple assay to assess telomerase activity as a complementary backbone test for telomere length.
We will demonstrate the setup and analysis of pre-microRNA 96-well arrays for QPCR using a robot as well as by hand with a Thermo Scientific Matrix multichannel pipette.
The associated chromosome trap (ACT) assay is a novel unbiased method for identifying long-range DNA interactions. The characterization of long range DNA interactions will allow us to determine the relationship of nuclear architecture to gene expression in both normal physiology and in diseased states.
We describe a set of assays to analyze expression levels of H1 linker histones. mRNA of individual H1 genes are quantitatively measured by random primer based reverse transcription followed by real-time PCR, whereas protein quantification of H1 histones is achieved by HPLC analysis.
Amplifying and Quantifying HIV-1 RNA in HIV Infected Individuals with Viral Loads Below the Limit of Detection by Standard Clinical Assays
Quantifying levels of HIV-1 RNA in plasma and sequencing single HIV-1 genomes from individuals with viral loads below the limit of detection (50-75 copies/ml) is difficult. Here we describe how to extract and quantify plasma viral RNA using a real time PCR assay that reliably measures HIV-1 RNA down to 0.3 copies/ml and how to amplify viral genomes by single genome sequencing, from samples with very low viral loads.
Genetic associations often remain unexplained at a functional level. This method aims to assess the effect of phenotype-associated genetic markers on gene expression by analyzing cells heterozygous for transcribed SNPs. The technology allows accurate measurement by MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry to quantify allele-specific primer extension products.
An inexpensive, high throughput method for simultaneous detection of up to 43 molecular targets is described. Applications of mPCR/RLB include microbial typing and detection of multiple pathogens from clinical samples.
1Laboratorio de Investigación y Desarrollo (LID), Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, 2Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, 3Laboratorio de Diagnostico Molecular, Facultad de Medicina, University of Concepcion,Chile, 4University of California San Diego School of Medicine
A One-Step RT-PCR assay for detection and genogroup identification of Norovirus isolates from children’s stools, that utilizes primers and TaqMan probes specific to the open reading frame 1 (ORF1)-ORF2 junction region, the most conserved region of the Norovirus genome is described. A non-commercial, cost-effective RNA extraction method is detailed.
An integrated microfluidic thermoplastic chip has been developed for use as a molecular diagnostic. The chip performs nucleic acid extraction, reverse transcriptase, and PCR. Methods for fabricating and running the chip are described.
High Throughput MicroRNA Profiling: Optimized Multiplex qRT-PCR at Nanoliter Scale on the Fluidigm Dynamic ArrayTM IFCs
1The Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research, University of California San Francisco, 2Center for Reproductive Sciences, University of California San Francisco, 3Department of Urology, University of California San Francisco, 4Department of Cell and Tissue Biology, University of California San Francisco, 5Fluidigm Corporation, Fluidigm Corporation, 6Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, 7UCSF - Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of California San Francisco
Here we describe an optimized multiplex reverse transcriptase quantitative PCR (qRT-PCR) protocol in combination with a microfluidic platform as a cost and time effective high-throughput screening tool for microRNA (miRNA) expression levels, especially when working with limited amounts of sample.
The CompoZr Custom Zinc-Finger Nuclease (ZFN) Service enables precise genome editing in any organism or cell line at any locus defined by the user. This article describes the process for the design, manufacture, validation and implementation of the CompoZr Custom ZFN Service.
γ-Herpesviruses (γ-HVs) establish life-long persistency in their host. Infection of mice with γ-HV68 provides a genetically tractable in vivo model for the characterization of the lifecycle/pathogenesis of γHVs. This protocol describes the detection and quantitation of γHV68 infection at acute and latent stages following infection by plaque-forming, infectious center, and qPCR assays.
Single cell expression profiling allows the detailed gene expression analysis of individual cells. We describe methods for the isolation of cardiomyocytes, and preparing the resulting lysates for either whole transcriptome microarray or qPCR of specific targets.
The Virochip is a pan-viral microarray designed to simultaneously detect all known viruses as well as novel viruses on the basis of conserved sequence homology. Here we demonstrate how to run a Virochip assay to analyze clinical samples for the presence of both known and unknown viruses.
1Banting and Best Department of Medical Research and Department of Molecular Genetics, University of Toronto, 2Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research, University of Toronto, 3Donnelly Sequencing Centre, University of Toronto, 4Genetics and Molecular Biology Branch, National Human Genome Research Institute, NIH, 5Stanford Genome Technology Center, Stanford School of Medicine, Stanford University, 6Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Toronto
We have developed comprehensive, unbiased genome-wide screens to understand gene-drug and gene-environment interactions. Methods for screening these mutant collections are presented.
We describe a robust method for chromatin immunoprecipitation using primary T cells. The method is founded on standard approaches, but uses a specific set of conditions and reagents that improve efficiency for limited a quantities of cells. Importantly, a detailed description of the data analysis phase is presented.
1Regenerative Biology, Morgridge Institute for Research, 2Department of Cell & Regenerative Biology, University of Wisconsin, 3Department of Molecular, Cellular, & Regenerative Biology, University of California
Here we describe a method for preparation of both single read and paired end Illumina mRNA-Seq sequencing libraries for gene expression analysis based on T7 linear RNA amplification. This protocol requires only 10 nanograms of starting total RNA and generates highly consistent libraries representing whole transcripts.
Telomeres are essential for chromosome stability and the telomere G-overhang structure is essential for telomerase-mediated telomere maintenance. We have recently adopted two methods for detecting the telomere G-overhang structure in Trypanosoma brucei, which are native in-gel hybridization and ligation-mediated primer extension, which will be described.
The Direct PCR approach presented here facilitates PCR amplification directly from small amounts of unpurified plant and animal tissue.
In vitro tRNA Methylation Assay with the Entamoeba histolytica DNA and tRNA Methyltransferase Dnmt2 (Ehmeth) Enzyme
This protocol describes the preparation of a synthetic tRNA substrate for the Entamoeba histolytica DNA/tRNA methyltransferase 2 (Dnmt2) homolog Ehmeth and the measure of its methyltransferase activity. This experimental approach can be used for investigating the activity of other Dnmt2 proteins.
ampliPHOX colorimetric detection technology is presented as an inexpensive alternative to fluorescence detection for microarrays. Based on photopolymerization, ampliPHOX produces solid polymer spots visible to the naked eye in just a few minutes. Results are then imaged and automatically interpreted with a simple yet powerful software package.
We describe a protocol to identify key roles of host signaling molecules in lytic replication of a model herpesvirus, gamma herpesvirus 68 (γHV68). Utilizing genetically modified mouse strains and embryonic fibroblasts for γHV68 lytic replication, the protocol permits both phenotypic characterization and molecular interrogation of virus-host interactions in viral lytic replication.
Modeling Neural Immune Signaling of Episodic and Chronic Migraine Using Spreading Depression In Vitro
Migraine and its transformation to chronic migraine are immense healthcare burdens in need of improved treatment options. We seek to define how neural immune signaling modulates the susceptibility to migraine, modeled in vitro using spreading depression in hippocampal slice cultures, as a means to develop novel therapeutic targets.
A tool and chemistries are described to sequentially isolate nucleic acids followed by proteins from a sample without the need for electricity. The tool consists of a sorbent held within a transfer pipette while the isolation chemistries are based on solid-phase extraction principles. The isolated macromolecules can be analyzed by immuno-based and PCR-based assays.
Recently high-throughput sequencing technology has greatly increased sensitivity of Chromatin Immunoprecipitation (ChIP) experiment and prompted its application using purified cells or dissected tissue. Here we delineate a method to use ChIP technique with Drosophila tissue, which can address the endogenous chromatin state in a well-characterized biological system.
Avidity-based Extracellular Interaction Screening (AVEXIS) for the Scalable Detection of Low-affinity Extracellular Receptor-Ligand Interactions
AVEXIS is a high throughput protein interaction assay developed to systematically screen for novel extracellular receptor-ligand pairs involved in cellular recognition processes. It is specifically designed to detect transient protein interactions that are difficult to identify using other high throughput approaches.
1Department of Obstretrics & Gynaecology, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, 2Department of Biochemistry, Schulich School of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario, 3Children's Health Research Institute
Bisulfite mutagenesis is the gold standard for analyzing DNA methylation. Our modified protocol allows for DNA methylation analysis at the single-cell level and was specifically designed for individual oocytes. It can also be used for cleavage-stage embryos.
Chromatin Immunoprecipitation (ChIP) to Assay Dynamic Histone Modification in Activated Gene Expression in Human Cells
This protocol describes how chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) is used to study the dynamic alterations to the chromatin template that regulate transcription induced by a signal transduction pathway.
Efforts to isolate the catalytic subunit of telomerase, TERT, in sufficient quantities for structural studies, have been met with limited success for more than a decade. Here, we present methods for the isolation of the recombinant Tribolium castaneum TERT (TcTERT) and the reconstitution of the active T. castaneum telomerase ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complex in vitro.
Chromatin Interaction Analysis with Paired-End Tag Sequencing (ChIA-PET) for Mapping Chromatin Interactions and Understanding Transcription Regulation
1Genome Institute of Singapore, Agency for Science, Technology and Research, Singapore, 2A*STAR-Duke-NUS Neuroscience Research Partnership, Singapore, 3Department of Biochemistry, National University of Singapore, Singapore
Chromatin Interaction Analysis by Paired-End Tag Sequencing (ChIA-PET) is a method for de novo detection of chromatin interactions, for better understanding of transcriptional control.
Multiplex Detection of Bacteria in Complex Clinical and Environmental Samples using Oligonucleotide-coupled Fluorescent Microspheres
We describe a multiplex method for the detection of microorganisms within a sample using oligonucleotide-coupled fluorescent beads. Amplicon from all organisms within a sample is hybridized to a panel of probe-coupled beads. A Luminex or Bio-Plex instrument is used to query each bead for bead type and hybridization signal.
An Allelotyping PCR for Identifying Salmonella enterica serovars Enteritidis, Hadar, Heidelberg, and Typhimurium
We describe a multiplex PCR for the rapid detection of Salmonella enterica serovars Enteritidis, Hadar, Heidelberg, and Typhimurium. Specific Salmonella serovars can be identified by targeting a multiplex PCR to genes and sequences unique to the O-antigen biosynthesis cluster and flagellin of a given serovar. Serovar is assigned then to a Salmonella isolate based on the appearance of specific, size amplicons (PCR product) corresponding to the target allele.
The Target ID Library is a plasmid-based, genome-wide collection of cloned cDNA used to identify miRNA targets. Here we demonstrate its use and application.
Neo-Islet Formation in Liver of Diabetic Mice by Helper-dependent Adenoviral Vector-Mediated Gene Transfer
1Department of Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, 2Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology & Metabolism, Diabetes & Endocrinology Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine, 3Department of Molecular & Cellular Biology, Baylor College of Medicine
We describe hepatic neo-islet formation in STZ (streptozotocin)-induced diabetic mice by gene transfer of Neurogenin3 (Ngn3) and Betacellulin (Btc) using helper-dependent adenoviral vector (HDAd) and the reversal of hyperglycemia. Our method takes advantages of helper-dependent adenoviral vectors with their highly efficient in vivo transduction and the long lasting gene expression.
Clathrin-mediated endocytosis depends on adaptor proteins that coordinate cargo selection and clathrin coat assembly. Here we describe procedures to study adaptor-clathrin physical interaction and live cell imaging approaches using as a model the yeast endocytic adaptor protein Sla1p.
1Center for Genome Sciences and Systems Biology, Department of Genetics, Washington University School of Medicine, 2Department of Internal Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, 3Department of Pediatrics, Washington University School of Medicine
Pooled DNA sequencing is a fast and cost-effective strategy to detect rare variants associated with complex phenotypes in large cohorts. Here we describe the computational analysis of pooled, next-generation sequencing of 32 cancer-related genes using the SPLINTER software package. This method is scalable, and applicable to any phenotype of interest.
One-day Workflow Scheme for Bacterial Pathogen Detection and Antimicrobial Resistance Testing from Blood Cultures
The design of a straightforward one-day workflow scheme for bacterial pathogen diagnostics enables the rapid recognition of bloodstream infections. The inclusion of eight clinically relevant bacterial targets and their antibiotic resistance profiles offers the clinician an initial insight on the same day, which can lead to more adequate therapy.
CRISPR/Cas systems mediate adaptive immunity in Bacteria and Archaea. Many Cas proteins are proposed to act as endoribonucleases acting on crRNA precursors of varying length. Here we illustrate three different approaches to generate pre-crRNA substrates for the biochemical analysis of Cas endonuclease activity.
1Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope, 2Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope, 3Shared Resource-DNA/RNA Peptide, Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope
Several 2’-Fluoro RNA aptamers against HIV-1Ba-L gp120 with nanomole affinity are isolated from a RNA library by in vitro SELEX procedure. A new dual inhibitory function anti-gp120 aptamer-siRNA chimera is created and shows considerable promise for systemic anti-HIV therapy.
A method for the isolation of single retinal cells and subsequent amplification of their cDNAs is described. Single-cell transcriptomics reveals the degree of cellular heterogeneity present in a tissue and uncovers new marker genes for rare cell populations. The accompanying protocol can be adjusted to suit many different cell types.
The Logic, Experimental Steps, and Potential of Heterologous Natural Product Biosynthesis Featuring the Complex Antibiotic Erythromycin A Produced Through E. coli
The heterologous biosynthesis of erythromycin A through E. coli includes the following experimental steps: 1) genetic transfer; 2) heterologous reconstitution; and 3) product analysis. Each step will be explained in the context of the motivation, potential, and challenges in producing therapeutic natural products using E. coli as a surrogate host.
Engineering and Evolution of Synthetic Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) Gene Therapy Vectors via DNA Family Shuffling
We demonstrate the basic technique to molecularly engineer and evolve synthetic Adeno-associated viral (AAV) gene therapy vectors via DNA family shuffling. Moreover, we provide general guidelines and representative examples for selection and analysis of individual chimeric capsids with enhanced properties on target cells in culture or in mice.
In this protocol we combine RNAi-mediated gene silencing with an in vivo diuresis assay to study the effects knockdown of genes of interest has on mosquito fluid excretion.
Here we describe a set of DNA mutation assays that can be combined with the yeast chronological life span model to study the genes/pathways that regulate or contribute to genomic DNA instability during aging.
We demonstrate a chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) method to identify factor interactions at tissue-specific genes during or after the onset of tissue-specific gene expression in mouse embryonic tissue. This protocol should be widely applicable for the study of tissue-specific gene activation as it occurs during normal embryonic development.
Peptides from Phage Display Library Modulate Gene Expression in Mesenchymal Cells and Potentiate Osteogenesis in Unicortical Bone Defects
A phage display library was used to identify peptide sequences that target bone. The objective was to investigate the effect of these peptides on mesenchymal cell differentiation and to determine their effect on bone regeneration.
Using quantitative PCR, we demonstrate how the well-established chick CAM model can be used to quantitatively analyze the metastasis of human tumor cells to distant organs.
The identification of brain tumor initiating cells (BTICs), the rare cells within a heterogeneous tumor possessing stem cell properties, provides new insights into human brain tumor pathogenesis. We have refined specific culture conditions to enrich for BTICs, and we routinely use flow cytometry to further enrich these populations. Self-renewal assays and transcript analysis by single cell RT-PCR can subsequently be performed on these isolated cells.