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Nucleic Acids Res. Jun 11, 1995; 23(11): 2006–2013.
PMCID: PMC306976

Consensus inverted terminal repeat sequence of Paramecium IESs: resemblance to termini of Tc1-related and Euplotes Tec transposons.


During the formation of a transcriptionally active macronucleus, ciliated protozoa excise large numbers of interstitial segments of DNA (internal eliminated sequences; IESs) from their chromosomes. In this study we analyze the published sequences of 20 IESs that interrupt surface protein genes of Paramecium and identify a consensus inverted terminal repeat. This sequence is similar to the ends of the Tc1-related transposons found in nematodes and other metazoans, as well as to both the ends of the Tec transposons and at least some of the IESs in the distantly related ciliate Euplotes crassus. The results of these analyses bolster previous proposals that IESs were created by transposition.

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