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Curr Genet. 1999 Oct;36(4):222-31.

Phylogenetic relationships between mating-type sequences from homothallic and heterothallic ascomycetes.

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Lehrstuhl für Allgemeine und Molekulare Botanik, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, D-44780 Bochum, Germany.


To gain a deeper insight into the evolution of mating-type genes from filamentous ascomycetes, a comprehensive sequence analysis of PCR-amplified sequences corresponding to A- and a-specific mating-type sequences was undertaken. The study included nine homothallic (compatible) and eight heterothallic (incompatible) members of the genera Neurospora and Sordaria. Distance and parsimony trees based on gene fragments from the mat a-1 and mat A-1 genes were compared with trees derived from partial DNA sequences of the gpd glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase gene. In contrast to the sequences from the gpd gene, mating-type genes show striking sequence differences, suggesting that these genes evolve very rapidly. Strong inter-relationships were found among homothallic, as well as among heterothallic, members of both genera, indicating that in each genus a change from one reproductive strategy to another might result from one single event.

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