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Cytogenet Genome Res. 2005;110(1-4):566-74.

The evolution of transposons in Schizosaccharomyces pombe.

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Laboratory of Gene Regulation and Development, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


Recent studies of the LTR-retrotransposons of Schizosaccharomyces pombe have shed considerable light on their evolution and function. The sequencing of the S. pombe genome allowed analysis of its transposon content. This analysis provides information about the maintenance and loss of transposons in the genome. The results of transposition assays and biochemical analyses demonstrate that the N-terminal protein of Tf1 is functionally equivalent to the Gag proteins of retroviruses and retrotransposons. Despite this conservation of function, the N-terminal protein of Tf1 lacks any sequence similarity to other known Gag proteins. Sequence analysis and experimental data also indicate that the Tf1 transposons of S. pombe target their integration into specific sites in the host genome. Transposition events resulting from the expression of Tf1 reveal a strong preference for intergenic regions, specifically at pol II promoters in a window 100-400 bp upstream of open reading frames. The complete and partial copies of Tf transposons in the sequenced genome of S. pombe show the same association of integration with promoter regions. This body of work explores how the transposon interacts with the host, the balance between the transposons propagation and loss, and how different families of transposons evolve.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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