Title of Project

The Effects of Aluminum on Gene Expression in Saccharomyces Cerevisiae

Researcher Information

Maria Farrell

Project Type


Start Date

7-4-2006 12:00 AM

End Date

7-4-2006 12:00 AM

This document is currently not available here.

Apr 7th, 12:00 AM Apr 7th, 12:00 AM

The Effects of Aluminum on Gene Expression in Saccharomyces Cerevisiae

Aluminum toxicity has been found to be a major constraint to crop productivity, a neurotoxic agent in animals and proposed to be a cofactor in human diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, anemia, growth disorders, glucose intolerance, and cardiac arrest. Suggested mechanisms of toxicity include alterations in nucleic acid function, changes in cell membrane permeability, inhibition of enzyme activity and protein synthesis, as well as competitive inhibition of several essential elements including magnesium, calcium, and iron. While several studies have examined gene expression of a few genes in response to aluminum (Al) exposure, there is a lack of data concerning how an entire genome responds to the presence of Al. In this research microarray technology was used to examine the potential effects of Al exposure (50, 100, 200, and 300μM Al solutions for 30 hours) on gene expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae(yeast), a model organism that shares roughly 31% of its genome with humans. Changes in gene expression were analyzed using MAGICTool, software developed through the Genome Consortium for Active Teaching (GCAT). Variability within and among microarray slides was specifically addressed by examining expression patterns on eight slides that received the same treatment (0μM Al). Subsequently, several genes were identified as being down-regulated in the Al conditions. Fewer genes were identified as being up-regulated under these same conditions. Particularly genes involved in metabolism, protein synthesis, and stress response were more noticeably affected.