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Evolutionary mechanisms of origins of new gene function have been a subject of long-standing debate. Here we report a convincing case in which positive Darwinian selection operated at the molecular level during the evolution of novel function by gene duplication. The genes for eosinophil cationic protein (ECP) and eosinophil-derived neurotoxin (EDN) in(More)
Eosinophils are frequently found in increased numbers in a variety of chronic fibrotic diseases; however, their role in the development of hepatic fibrosis has not been dissected in vivo. Here, we used interleukin-5 (IL-5) knockout (KO) mice to determine whether eosinophils contribute to the progressive liver fibrosis that develops in response to chronic(More)
OBJECTIVE Neonatal-onset multisystem inflammatory disease (NOMID; also known as chronic infantile neurologic, cutaneous, articular [CINCA] syndrome) is characterized by fever, chronic meningitis, uveitis, sensorineural hearing loss, urticarial skin rash, and a characteristic deforming arthropathy. We investigated whether patients with this disorder have(More)
The mammalian RNase A superfamily comprises a diverse array of ribonucleolytic proteins that have a variety of biochemical activities and physiological functions. Two rapidly evolving RNases of higher primates are of particular interest as they are major secretory proteins of eosinophilic leukocytes and have been found to possess anti-pathogen activities in(More)
Human eosinophil-derived neurotoxin (EDN) and eosinophil cationic protein (ECP) are members of a unique subfamily of rapidly evolving primate ribonuclease genes that emerged via a gene duplication event occurring after the divergence of Old World from New World monkeys (Rosenberg, H. F., Dyer, K. D., Tiffany, H. L., and Gonzalez, M. (1995) Nature Genet. 10,(More)
The Ribonuclease A superfamily includes an extensive network of distinct and divergent gene lineages. Although all ribonucleases of this superfamily share invariant structural and catalytic elements and some degree of enzymatic activity, the primary sequences have diverged significantly, ostensibly to promote novel function. We will review the literature on(More)
Eosinophils remain among the most enigmatic of cells, as our appreciation of their detrimental activities--e.g., asthma and allergic disease--far outweighs our understanding of their beneficial effects. Among the major secretory effector proteins of eosinophils are the ribonucleases eosinophil-derived neurotoxin (EDN) and eosinophil cationic protein (ECP)(More)
Here we report on the expression and function of RNase 7, one of the final RNase A superfamily ribonucleases identified in the human genome sequence. The human RNase 7 gene is expressed in various somatic tissues including the liver, kidney, skeletal muscle and heart. Recombinant RNase 7 is ribonucleolytically active against yeast tRNA, as expected from the(More)
RNase A (bovine pancreatic RNase) is the founding member an extensive family of divergent proteins that share specific elements of sequence homology, a unique disulfide-bonded tertiary structure, and the ability to hydrolyze polymeric RNA. Among the more intriguing and perhaps counterintuitive findings, at the current state of the art, the connection(More)
We have devised an ex vivo culture system which generates large numbers of eosinophils at high purity (>90%) from unselected mouse bone marrow progenitors. In response to 4 days of culture with recombinant mouse FLT3-L and recombinant mouse stem cell factor followed by recombinant mouse IL-5 alone thereafter, the resulting bone marrow-derived eosinophils(More)