Mol Biol Evol. 2007 Mar 1; [Epub ahead of print]
The Evolution of Spliceosomal Introns in Alveolates
Nguyen HD, Yoshihama M, Kenmochi N.
Frontier Science Research Center, University of Miyazaki 5200 Kihara, Kiyotake, Miyazaki 889-1692, Japan.
Many issues concerning the evolution of spliceosomal introns remain poorly understood. In this respect, the reconstruction of the evolution of introns in deep branching species such as alveolates is of special significance. In this study, we inferred the intron evolution in alveolates using 3,368 intron positions in 162 orthologs from 10 species (nine alveolates and one outgroup, Homo sapiens). We found that although very few intron gains and losses have occurred in Theileria and Plasmodium recently, many intron gains and losses have occurred in the evolution of alveolates. Thus, the rates of intron gain and loss in alveolates have varied greatly across time and lineage. Our results seem to support the notion that massive intron gains and losses have occurred during short episodes, perhaps coinciding with major evolutionary events.
PMID: 17331959 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]