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Yeast. 1999 Aug;15(11):1031-4.

Total number of coding open reading frames in the yeast genome.

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Institute of Microbiology, Wroclaw University, ul. Przybyszewskiego 63/77, 54-148 Wroclaw, Poland.


At the end of 1996 we approximated the total number of protein coding ORFs in the Saccharomyces cerevisiae genome, based on their properties, as 4700-4800. The number is much smaller than the 5800 which is widely accepted. According to our calculations, there remain about 200-300 orphans-ORFs without known function or homology to already discovered genes, which is only about 5% of the total number of genes. Our results would be questionable if the analysed set of known genes was not a statistically representative sample of the whole set of protein coding genes in the S. cerevisiae genome. Therefore, we repeated our estimation using recently updated databases. In the course of the last 18 months, previously unknown functions of about 500 genes have been found. We have used these to check our method, former results and conclusions. Our previous estimation of the total number of coding ORFs was confirmed.

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