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An easy-to-use, versatile and freely available graphic web server, FoldIndex is described: it predicts if a given protein sequence is intrinsically unfolded implementing the algorithm of Uversky and co-workers, which is based on the average residue hydrophobicity and net charge of the sequence. FoldIndex has an error rate comparable to that of more(More)
What evolutionary forces shape genes that contribute to the risk of human disease? Do similar selective pressures act on alleles that underlie simple versus complex disorders [1-3]? Answers to these questions will shed light onto the origin of human disorders (e.g., [4]) and help to predict the population frequencies of alleles that contribute to disease(More)
A major challenge in comparative genomics is to understand how phenotypic differences between species are encoded in their genomes. Phenotypic divergence may result from differential transcription of orthologous genes, yet less is known about the involvement of differential translation regulation in species phenotypic divergence. In order to assess(More)
Olfactory receptor (OR) genes constitute the basis for the sense of smell and are encoded by the largest mammalian gene superfamily of >1,000 genes. In humans, >60% of these are pseudogenes. In contrast, the mouse OR repertoire, although of roughly equal size, contains only approximately 20% pseudogenes. We asked whether the high fraction of nonfunctional(More)
Olfactory receptors (ORs) are a large family of proteins involved in the recognition and discrimination of numerous odorants. These receptors belong to the G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) hyperfamily, for which little structural data are available. In this study we predict the binding site residues of OR proteins by analyzing a set of 1441 OR protein(More)
Availability of complete genome sequences allows in-depth comparison of single-residue and oligopeptide compositions of the corresponding proteomes. We have used principal component analysis (PCA) to study the landscape of compositional motifs across more than 70 genera from all three superkingdoms. Unexpectedly, the first two principal components clearly(More)
Olfactory receptor (OR) genes constitute the basis of the sense of smell and are encoded by the largest mammalian gene superfamily, with >1000 members. In humans, but not in mice or dogs, the majority of OR genes have become pseudogenes, suggesting that OR genes in humans evolve under different selection pressures than in other mammals. To explore this(More)
Bitter taste perception is crucial for the survival of organisms because it enables them to avoid the ingestion of potentially harmful substances. Bitter taste receptors are encoded by a gene family that in humans has been shown to contain 25 putatively functional genes and 8 pseudogenes and in mouse 33 putatively functional genes and 3 pseudogenes.(More)
Of more than 1,000 human olfactory receptor genes, more than half seem to be pseudogenes. We investigated whether the most recent of these disruptions might still segregate with the intact form by genotyping 51 candidate genes in 189 ethnically diverse humans. The results show an unprecedented prevalence of segregating pseudogenes, identifying one of the(More)
BACKGROUND Olfactory receptors (ORs) are the largest gene family in mammalian genomes. Since nearly all OR genes are orphan receptors, inference of functional similarity or differences between odorant receptors typically relies on sequence comparisons. Based on the alignment of entire coding region sequence, OR genes are classified into families and(More)