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Sela et al. Genome Biology 2010, 11:R59 http://genomebiology.com/2010/11/6/R59

Summary: Sela et al. Genome Biology 2010, 11:R59
2010 Sela et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons At-
tribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any
medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
The role of transposable elements in the evolution
of non-mammalian vertebrates and invertebrates
Noa Sela1,2, Eddo Kim1 and Gil Ast*1
Background: Transposable elements (TEs) have played an important role in the diversification and enrichment of
mammalian transcriptomes through various mechanisms such as exonization and intronization (the birth of new
exons/introns from previously intronic/exonic sequences, respectively), and insertion into first and last exons. However,
no extensive analysis has compared the effects of TEs on the transcriptomes of mammals, non-mammalian vertebrates
and invertebrates.
Results: We analyzed the influence of TEs on the transcriptomes of five species, three invertebrates and two non-
mammalian vertebrates. Compared to previously analyzed mammals, there were lower levels of TE introduction into
introns, significantly lower numbers of exonizations originating from TEs and a lower percentage of TE insertion within
the first and last exons. Although the transcriptomes of vertebrates exhibit significant levels of exonization of TEs, only


Source: Ast, Gil - Department of Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry, Tel Aviv University


Collections: Biology and Medicine