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Trends Genet. 2004 Apr;20(4):171-6.

Evolutionary convergence of alternative splicing in ion channels.

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  • Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, Oxford, UK. copley@well.ox.ac.uk


In Drosophila melanogaster and humans, members of three different ion-channel gene families share tandem exon duplications, which are alternatively spliced. In this article, I demonstrate that the duplication events that give rise to these mutually exclusive exons are unlikely to be ancestral but have probably occurred independently in different lineages. These events provide remarkable examples of evolutionary convergence in alternative splicing. The result has important implications for the analysis of regulation of alternative splicing using comparative genomics and our understanding of molecular evolution.

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