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2.  Ninety-day oral toxicity studies on two genetically modified maize MON810 varieties in Wistar Han RCC rats (EU 7th Framework Programme project GRACE) 
Archives of Toxicology  2014;88(12):2289-2314.
The GMO Risk Assessment and Communication of Evidence (GRACE; www.grace-fp7.eu) project is funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme. A key objective of GRACE is to conduct 90-day animal feeding trials, animal studies with an extended time frame as well as analytical, in vitro and in silico studies on genetically modified (GM) maize in order to comparatively evaluate their use in GM plant risk assessment. In the present study, the results of two 90-day feeding trials with two different GM maize MON810 varieties, their near-isogenic non-GM varieties and four additional conventional maize varieties are presented. The feeding trials were performed by taking into account the guidance for such studies published by the EFSA Scientific Committee in 2011 and the OECD Test Guideline 408. The results obtained show that the MON810 maize at a level of up to 33 % in the diet did not induce adverse effects in male and female Wistar Han RCC rats after subchronic exposure, independently of the two different genetic backgrounds of the event.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00204-014-1374-8) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1007/s00204-014-1374-8
PMCID: PMC4247492  PMID: 25270621
Food/Feed Guidance Document of the EFSA Scientific Committee (2011); Genetically modified maize MON810; GRACE; Rat feeding trial; Subchronic oral toxicity study
3.  Possible role of the Nt-4/1 protein in macromolecular transport in vascular tissue 
Plant Signaling & Behavior  2013;8(10):e25784.
The Arabidopsis thaliana 4/1 (At-4/1) protein has a highly α-helical structure with potential to interact both with itself and other protein ligands, including the movement proteins of some plant viruses; the Nicotiana tabacum ortholog (Nt-4/1) has similar structure. Here we describe localization of GUS expression in transgenic N. tabacum seedlings under control of the Nt-4/1 promoter, which indicates that transcription is associated with the veins at certain developmental stages, and especially in the hypocotyl. Viroid accumulation and movement was altered in plants in which 4/1 expression was reduced by virus-induced gene silencing. These localization studies support a role of 4/1 in signaling in the vasculature, including mobility of pathogen-related and cellular RNAs.
doi:10.4161/psb.25784
PMCID: PMC4091084  PMID: 23887490
4.  Plant 4/1 protein: potential player in intracellular, cell-to-cell and long-distance signaling 
Originally isolated as a result of its ability to interact with the movement protein of Tomato spotted wilt virus in a yeast two-hybrid system, the 4/1 protein is proving to be an excellent tool for studying intracellular protein trafficking and intercellular communication. Expression of 4/1 in vivo is tightly regulated, first appearing in the veins of the cotyledon and later in the vasculature of the leaf and stem in association with the xylem parenchyma and phloem parenchyma. Structural studies indicate that 4/1 proteins contain as many as five coiled–coil (CC) domains; indeed, the highest level of sequence identity among 4/1 proteins involves their C-terminal CC domains, suggesting that protein–protein interaction is important for biological function. Recent data predict that the tertiary structure of this C-terminal CC domain is strikingly similar to that of yeast protein She2p; furthermore, like She2p, 4/1 protein exhibits RNA-binding activity, and mutational analysis has shown that the C-terminal CC domain is responsible for RNA binding. The 4/1 protein contains a nuclear export signal. Additional microscopy studies involving leptomycin and computer prediction suggest the presence of a nuclear localization signal as well.
doi:10.3389/fpls.2014.00026
PMCID: PMC3933784  PMID: 24611067
intracellular transport; cell-to-cell transport; long-distance signaling; phloem transport; RNA binding protein
5.  Microscopic Analysis of Severe Structural Rearrangements of the Plant Endoplasmic Reticulum and Golgi Caused by Overexpression of Poa semilatent virus Movement Protein 
The Scientific World Journal  2012;2012:416076.
Cell-to-cell transport of plant viruses is mediated by virus-encoded movement proteins and occurs through plasmodesmata interconnecting neighboring cells in plant tissues. Three movement proteins coded by the “triple gene block” (TGB) and named TGBp1, TGBp2 and TGBp3 have distinct functions in viral transport. TGBp1 binds viral genomic RNAs to form ribonucleoprotein complexes representing the transport form of viral genome, while TGBp2 and TGBp3 are necessary for intracellular delivery of such complexes to plasmodesmata. Recently, it was revealed that overexpression of Potato virus X TGBp3 triggers the unfolded protein response mitigating the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress leading to cell death if this protein reaches high levels in the ER. Here we report microscopic studies of the influence of the Poa semilatent hordeivirus TGBp3 overexpressed in Nicotiana benthamiana epidermal cells by particle bombardment on cell endomembranes and demonstrate that the protein C-terminal transmembrane segment contains a determinant responsible for vesiculation and coalescence of the endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi presumably accompanying the ER stress that can be induced upon high-level TGBp3 expression.
doi:10.1100/2012/416076
PMCID: PMC3259505  PMID: 22272174
6.  The Role of Microtubule Association in Plasmodesmal Targeting of Potato mop-top virus Movement Protein TGBp1 
Cell-to-cell movement of Potato mop-top virus (PMTV) is mediated by three virus-encoded ‘triple gene block’ (TGB) proteins termed TGBp1, TGBp2 and TGBp3. TGBp1 binds virus RNAs to form viral ribonucleoprotein complexes (vRNPs), the transport form of viral genome. TGBp2 and TGBp3 are necessary for intracellular delivery of TGBp1-containing vRNPs to plasmodesmata. To analyze subcellular localization and transport of TGBp1 we used a single binary vector for agrobacterium-mediated co-expression of PMTV TGBp1 fused to green fluorescent protein and TGBp2/TGBp3. At two days post infiltration (dpi) TGBp1 was found in the nucleus and in association with microtubules (MTs). Similar localization pattern was revealed in cells expressing GFP-TGBp1 alone after particle bombardment. At 3 dpi, in addition to the nucleus and MTs, TGBp1 was detected in numerous granular bodies located both along the MTs and at the cell wall. The latter structures co-localized with plasmodesmata-associated callose depositions. At 4 dpi, GFP-TGBp1 was detected in cell wall-associated bodies and also in residual MTs, the nucleoplasm and large perinuclear inclusions resembling aggresomes. Therefore GFP-TGBp1 association with MTs preceded to its localization to plasmodesmata. Disassembly of cell MTs by colchicine prevented GFP-TGBp1 targeting to plasmodesmata and the MT-dependent aggresome formation. Deletion analysis also revealed a correlation between TGBp1 microtubule association and plasmodesmata targeting. We propose that TGBp1 interaction with MTs may be important for the formation of vRNP bodies destined for the transport to plasmodesmata as well as degradation of the excessive TGBp1.
doi:10.2174/1874357901105010001
PMCID: PMC3109696  PMID: 21660184
Movement protein; virus movement; plasmodesmata; microtubules; subcellular localization.
7.  Problem formulation in the environmental risk assessment for genetically modified plants 
Transgenic Research  2009;19(3):425-436.
Problem formulation is the first step in environmental risk assessment (ERA) where policy goals, scope, assessment endpoints, and methodology are distilled to an explicitly stated problem and approach for analysis. The consistency and utility of ERAs for genetically modified (GM) plants can be improved through rigorous problem formulation (PF), producing an analysis plan that describes relevant exposure scenarios and the potential consequences of these scenarios. A properly executed PF assures the relevance of ERA outcomes for decision-making. Adopting a harmonized approach to problem formulation should bring about greater uniformity in the ERA process for GM plants among regulatory regimes globally. This paper is the product of an international expert group convened by the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) Research Foundation.
doi:10.1007/s11248-009-9321-9
PMCID: PMC2865628  PMID: 19757133
Ecological risk assessment; GMO; Genetically engineered; Hazard identification
8.  Intracellular Targeting of a Hordeiviral Membrane-Spanning Movement Protein: Sequence Requirements and Involvement of an Unconventional Mechanism▿  
Journal of Virology  2007;82(3):1284-1293.
The membrane-spanning protein TGBp3 is one of the three movement proteins (MPs) of Poa semilatent virus. TGBp3 is thought to direct other viral MPs and genomic RNA to peripheral bodies located in close proximity to plasmodesmata. We used the ectopic expression of green fluorescent protein-fused TGBp3 in epidermal cells of Nicotiana benthamiana leaves to study the TGBp3 intracellular trafficking pathway. Treatment with inhibitors was used to reveal that the targeting of TGBp3 to plasmodesmata does not require a functional cytoskeleton or secretory system. In addition, the suppression of endoplasmic reticulum-derived vesicle formation by a dominant negative mutant of small GTPase Sar1 had no detectable effect on TGBp3 trafficking to peripheral bodies. Collectively, these results suggested the involvement of an unconventional pathway in the intracellular transport of TGBp3. The determinants of targeting to plasmodesmata were localized to the C-terminal region of TGBp3, including the conserved hydrophilic and terminal membrane-spanning domains.
doi:10.1128/JVI.01164-07
PMCID: PMC2224415  PMID: 18032484
9.  Rice Dwarf Phytoreovirus Segment S6-Encoded Nonstructural Protein Has a Cell-to-Cell Movement Function 
Journal of Virology  2004;78(10):5382-5389.
Rice dwarf virus (RDV) is a member of the genus Phytoreovirus, which is composed of viruses with segmented double-stranded RNA genomes. Proteins that support the intercellular movement of these viruses in the host have not been identified. Microprojectile bombardment was used to determine which open reading frames (ORFs) support intercellular movement of a heterologous virus. A plasmid containing an infectious clone of Potato virus X (PVX) defective in cell-to-cell movement and expressing either β-glucuronidase or green fluorescent protein (GFP) was used for cobombardment with plasmids containing ORFs from RDV gene segments S1 through S12 onto leaves of Nicotiana benthamiana. Cell-to-cell movement of the movement-defective PVX was restored by cobombardment with a plasmid containing S6. In the absence of S6, no other gene segment supported movement. Identical results were obtained with Nicotiana tabacum, a host that allows fewer viruses to infect and spread within its tissue. S6 supported the cell-to-cell movement of the movement-defective PVX in sink and source leaves of N. benthamiana. A mutant S6 lacking the translation start codon did not complement the cell-to-cell movement of the movement-defective PVX. An S6 protein product (Pns6)-enhanced GFP fusion was observed near or within cell walls of epidermal cells from N. tabacum. By immunocytochemistry, unfused Pns6 was localized to plasmodesmata in rice leaves infected with RDV. S6 thus encodes a protein with characteristics identical to those of other viral proteins required for the cell-to-cell movement of their genome and therefore is likely required for the cell-to-cell movement of RDV.
doi:10.1128/JVI.78.10.5382-5389.2004
PMCID: PMC400330  PMID: 15113917

Results 1-9 (9)