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Clinical evidence suggests that oxytocin treatment improves social deficits and repetitive behavior in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). However, the neuropeptide has a short plasma half-life and poor ability to penetrate the blood-brain barrier. In order to facilitate the development of more bioavailable oxytocinergic compounds as therapeutics to treat(More)
Senescence is a highly regulated process that limits cellular replication by enforcing a G1 arrest in response to various stimuli. Replicative senescence occurs in response to telomeric DNA erosion, and telomerase expression can offset replicative senescence leading to immortalization of many human cells. Limited data exists regarding changes of microRNA(More)
Guanine-rich DNA and RNA sequences can fold into unique structures known as G-quadruplexes. The structures of G-quadruplexes can be divided into several classes, depending on the parallel or antiparallel nature of the strands and the number of G-rich tracts present in an oligonucleotide. Oligonucleotides with single tracts of guanines form intermolecular(More)
Telomeric DNA can fold into four-stranded structures known as G-quadruplexes. Here we investigate the ability of G-quadruplex DNA to serve as a substrate for recombinant Tetrahymena and native Euplotes telomerase. Inter- and intramolecular G-quadruplexes were gel-purified and their stability examined using native gel electrophoresis, circular dichroism (CD)(More)
The chromosomes of eukaryotes end in a specialized complex of proteins and repetitive DNA called the telomere. Telomeres form a protective cap that prevents chromosome fusions, protects chromosome ends from degradation, and assists in positioning chromosomes in the nucleus. In the absence of replenishing mechanisms, telomeric DNA is lost during each cell(More)
Conserved domains within the RNA component of telomerase provide the template for reverse transcription, recruit protein components to the holoenzyme and are required for enzymatic activity. Among the functionally essential domains in ciliate telomerase RNA is stem-loop IV, which strongly stimulates telomerase activity and processivity even when provided in(More)
Human chromosomes terminate with telomeres, which contain double-stranded G-rich, repetitive DNA followed by a single-stranded overhang of the G-rich sequence. Single-stranded oligonucleotides containing G-rich telomeric repeats have been observed in vitro to fold into a variety of G-quadruplex topologies depending on the solution conditions. G-quadruplex(More)
Squalene synthase (SQase) catalyzes two consecutive reactions in sterol biosynthesis. The first is the condensation of two molecules of farnesyl diphosphate (FPP) to form a cyclopropylcarbinyl intermediate, presqualene diphosphate (PSPP). The subsequent conversion of PSPP to squalene (SQ) involves an extensive rearrangement of the carbon skeleton and a(More)
Squalene synthase (SQase) catalyzes the condensation of two molecules of farnesyl diphosphate (FPP) to form presqualene diphosphate (PSPP) and the subsequent rearrangement and NADPH-dependent reduction of PSPP to squalene (SQ). These reactions are the first committed steps in cholesterol biosynthesis. When recombinant SQase was incubated with FPP in the(More)
Mounting evidence supporting the existence of DNA structures containing G-quartets in vivo makes these unique and diverse nucleic acid structures an important research subject, and future investigations aimed at elucidating their biological significance are expected. The purification and characterization of G-quartet structures can be challenging because(More)