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Mol Biol Evol. 2001 Mar;18(3):322-9.

The Drosophila alcohol dehydrogenase gene may have evolved independently of the functionally homologous medfly, olive fly, and flesh fly genes.

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Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, Research Center of Crete, Foundation for Research and Technology, Heraklion, Crete, Greece.


cDNAs for alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) isozymes were cloned and sequenced from two tephritid fruit flies, the medfly Ceratitis capitata and the olive fly Bactrocera oleae. Because of the high sequence divergence compared with the Drosophila sequences, the medfly cDNAs were cloned using sequence information from the purified proteins, and the olive fly cDNAs were cloned by functional complementation in yeast. The medfly peptide sequences are about 83% identical to each other, and the corresponding mRNAs have the tissue distribution shown by the corresponding isozymes, ADH-1 and ADH-2. The olive fly peptide sequence is more closely related to medfly ADH-2. The tephritid ADHs share less than 40% sequence identity with Drosophila ADH and ADH-related genes but are >57% identical to the ADH of the flesh fly Sarcophaga peregrina, a more distantly related species. To explain this unexpected finding, it is proposed that the ADH: genes of the family Drosophilidae may not be orthologous to the ADH: genes of the other two families, Tephritidae and Sarcophagidae.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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