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BMC Genomics

, 11:171

First Online: 12 March 2010Received: 12 January 2010Accepted: 12 March 2010


BackgroundNumerous cases of horizontal transfers HTs have been described for eukaryote genomes, but in contrast to prokaryote genomes, no whole genome evaluation of HTs has been carried out. This is mainly due to a lack of parametric methods specially designed to take the intrinsic heterogeneity of eukaryote genomes into account. We applied a simple and tested method based on local variations of genomic signatures to analyze the genome of the pathogenic fungus Aspergillus fumigatus.

ResultsWe detected 189 atypical regions containing 214 genes, accounting for about 1 Mb of DNA sequences. However, the fraction of atypical DNA detected was smaller than the average amount detected in the same conditions in prokaryote genomes 3.1% vs 5.6%. It appeared that about one third of these regions contained no annotated genes, a proportion far greater than in prokaryote genomes. When analyzing the origin of these HTs by comparing their signatures to a home made database of species signatures, 3 groups of donor species emerged: bacteria 40%, fungi 25%, and viruses 22%. It is to be noticed that though inter-domain exchanges are confirmed, we only put in evidence very few exchanges between eukaryotic kingdoms.

ConclusionsIn conclusion, we demonstrated that HTs are not negligible in eukaryote genomes, bearing in mind that in our stringent conditions this amount is a floor value, though of a lesser extent than in prokaryote genomes. The biological mechanisms underlying those transfers remain to be elucidated as well as the biological functions of the transferred genes.

AbbreviationsHThorizontal transfer

MEmobile element

HGTHorizontally transferred gene

Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1471-2164-11-171 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Autor: Ludovic V Mallet - Jennifer Becq - Patrick Deschavanne

Fuente: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/1471-2164-11-171

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