Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Jan 13;101(2):568-73. Epub 2003 Dec 30.

Phylogenetic evidence for the early evolution of microcystin synthesis.

Author information

  • 1Department of Applied Chemistry and Microbiology, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 56, Viikki Biocenter, Viikinkaari 9, FIN-00014, Helsinki, Finland.

Abstract

Cyanobacteria are a prolific source of secondary metabolites, including compounds with toxic and enzyme-inhibiting activities. Microcystins and nodularins are the end products of a secondary metabolic pathway comprised of mixed polyketide synthases and nonribosomal peptide synthetases. Both peptides are potent natural toxins produced by distantly related genera of cyanobacteria. Horizontal gene transfer is thought to play a role in the sporadic distribution of microcystin producers among cyanobacteria. Our phylogenetic analyses indicate a coevolution of housekeeping genes and microcystin synthetase genes for the entire evolutionary history of the toxin. Hence they do not corroborate horizontal transfer of genes for microcystin biosynthesis between the genera. The sporadic distribution of microcystin synthetase genes in modern cyanobacteria suggests that the ability to produce the toxin has been lost repeatedly in the more derived lineages of cyanobacteria. The data we present here strongly suggest that the genes encoding nodularin synthetase are recently derived from those encoding microcystin synthetase.

PMID:
14701903
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC327188
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (3)Free text

Fig. 1.
Fig. 2.
Fig. 3.

Publication Types, MeSH Terms, Substances, Secondary Source ID

Publication Types

MeSH Terms

Substances

Secondary Source ID

PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk