Mammoth Genome Analysis Points to Pre-Extinction Genome Declines

Mammoth Genome Analysis Points to Pre-Extinction Genome Declines

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – An analysis of available ancient genome sequences suggests that the genus of the woolly mammoth, Mammuthus primigenius, began to take even more potentially harmful mutations as populations declined and species was approaching extinction – a discovery Which could have implications for the recognition of endangered species and implement appropriate conservation measures.
“There is a long history of theoretical work on how genomes of small populations could change,” said Rebekah Rogers, an integrative biology researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, in a statement. “Here we had a unique opportunity to see snapshots of ‘before’ and ‘after’ genomes of a population decline in a single species.” Rogers and co-author Montgomery Slatkin, also based at UC Berkeley, analysed the available genomic sequences of a mammalian sample from a 45,000-year-old, continental Siberian, which represents a time when the mammoth population remains robust. The researchers compared these sequences to those of a mammoth 4,300 years old from a small population on the island of Wrangel, which suffered an increase after the disappearance of the continental population. The mammoth is estimated to be missing for 3700 years.
Compared to the old genome sequences of mammoth and elephant available, the team saw a jump in deletions and retrogenes alter genes in the mammalian genome of Wrangel Island, and new point mutations predicted to pass protein function. The apparent “genomic fusion” in the island’s population declined including pseudogenes olfactory genes, and loss of gene-encoding proteins related to elephant urinary choice and mutations in genes involved in the characteristics of the mammoth layer noted researchers.
“These data carry the signature of a genomic fusion in small populations, in line with the evolution of the almost neutral genome,” wrote Rogers and Slatkin in his PLoS Genetics document. “They also suggest a number of noxious variants that elevate pre-extinction genomes, a warning to ongoing efforts to protect endangered species with small sizes of existing populations.”
For the new study, the pair proposed to characterise genetic variations, deletions, and point mutations using existing genomic sequence data for Oimyakon mammoth and mammoth Wrangel sequenced at an average depth of 11 times and 17 at both the Swedish Museum of Natural History Amor Dalen and colleagues for a 2015 study in current biology.
When we compared these sequences with sequences of an Indian elephant and an African elephant shrub reference genome, the researchers found significant differences between the two genomes of the woolly mammoth. The mammalian genome Island Wrangel contained complete deletions, deletions of genes, retrogene content and stop coding causing point mutations compared to the mammal genome Oimyakon, for example.

Iran Boosts Ties With Italy And France

Iranian President Mr. Hassan Rouhani visited Italy and France from January 26 to 30, 2016 on his first official visits to both countries. Iran is emerging from the shadows after 12 years of international trade sanctions. It is 16 years since an Iranian president last made a state visit to Europe, and as

Iran returned to the international stage after more than a decade of sanctions, there was huge anticipation both at home and abroad about the potential changes to come. Mr. Rouhani met Pope Francis in the Vatican and talked about problems afflicting the Middle East. Mr. Rouhani also met the Italian Prime Minister, Mr. Matteo Renzi. During Mr. Rouhani’s visit, Italy and Iran signed 17 billion euros worth of business deals. The Italian deals cover areas including energy, infrastructure, steel, shipbuilding and aviation. There was a 3.7-billion euro contract for oil services group Saipem, up to 5.7 billion euros in contracts for steel firm Danieli, up to 4 billion euros of business for infrastructure firm Condotte d’Acqua, 4 billion euros for rail and road company Gavio and 400 million euros for planes from Finmeccanica. Europe was Iran’s largest trading partner before the sanctions and Italy was second only after Germany, with seven billion euros in trade, falling to 1.5 billion euros after the sanctions. Italy hopes to rebuild that to three billion in exports alone by 2018. Mr. Rouhani talked up his country as a regional trade hub and pillar of stability saying that generating economic growth and jobs in the Middle East were crucial to defeating extremism.

Iranian President Mr. Rouhani reached France on January 28, 2016, starting with investments to boost Iran’s flagging economy that had been crippled by decades of sanctions. French President Mr. Francois Hollande said in a joint news conference following a meeting with Mr. Rouhani at the Elysee Palace that he wanted the relationship to be useful to both countries and useful to the Middle East region affected by wars, crises and tragedies. Mr. Hollande added that he raised the issue of human rights and freedom during the meeting. Mr. Rouhani said during the joint conference that they must help the Syrian people so that they could build a sustainable future for the country. A total of 20 agreements were signed after Mr.’ Rouhani’s meeting with Mr. Hollande. Iran Air signed a deal to buy .118 aircraft from Airbus, valued at 22.8 billion euros ($25 billion). Iran Air and Airbus signed an agreement for the acquisition of the full range of new Airbus airliners (73 wide-bodied and 45 single aisles). This includes pilot and maintenance training and support services to help the entry into service and efficient operations of these new aircraft. A comprehensive co-operation agreement to modernise the civil aviation sector of Iran was inked. The agreement was signed to support the development of Air Navigation Services, airport and aircraft operations,

French President Mr. Francois FLollande



with Iranian President Mr. Hassan
Pouhani during the latter’s visit to France
on January 28, 2016.

regulatory harmonisation, technical and academic training, maintenance, repair and industrial cooperation. PSA Peugeot Citroen also announced a joint venture with Iran Khodro to produce latest- generation vehicles in Tehran by the end of 2017. French and Iranian companies also signed agreements in the sectors of health and agriculture. Oil and gas company Total inked a deal with the National Iranian Oil Company to purchase crude oil.

Mr. Rouhani had originally been due to visit Europe in November 2015, but cancelled the trip after an Islamic State attack on Paris, which killed 130 people. Many Western nations have accused Iran of funding various militant groups, and despite a landmark nuclear deal between the world powers and Tehran in 2015, the United States is keeping some of its financial sanctions in place because of the alleged links and human rights abuses.