Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
BMC Biol. 2009 May 5;7:20. doi: 10.1186/1741-7007-7-20.

Lateral gene transfer between prokaryotes and multicellular eukaryotes: ongoing and significant?

Author information

  • 1Department of Biology, Leidy Laboratories 326, University of Pennsylvania, 433 South University Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6018, USA. veraros@sas.upenn.edu

Abstract

The expansion of genome sequencing projects has produced accumulating evidence for lateral transfer of genes between prokaryotic and eukaryotic genomes. However, it remains controversial whether these genes are of functional importance in their recipient host. Nikoh and Nakabachi, in a recent paper in BMC Biology, take a first step and show that two genes of bacterial origin are highly expressed in the pea aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum. Active gene expression of transferred genes is supported by three other recent studies. Future studies should reveal whether functional proteins are produced and whether and how these are targeted to the appropriate compartment. We argue that the transfer of genes between host and symbiont may occasionally be of great evolutionary importance, particularly in the evolution of the symbiotic interaction itself.

Comment on

PMID:
19416510
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2687425
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

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