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Eur J Cell Biol. 2008 May;87(5):305-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ejcb.2008.01.003. Epub 2008 Mar 6.

In contrast to the nematode and fruit fly all 9 intron positions of the sea anemone lamin gene are conserved in human lamin genes.

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Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Am Fassberg, D-37077 Goettingen, Germany.


We identified the single gene for nuclear lamin in the genome draft of the sea anemone Nematostella vectensis, a member of the cnidaria, a very old metazoan phylum. The gene consists of 10 exons and 9 introns. Strikingly all 9 intron positions are conserved in the human lamin B genes, which have only 1 (lamin B1) or 2 (lamin B2) additional introns. Using the information on neighboring genes we propose that the human lamin B1 gene on chromosome 5 is the true homolog of the Nematostella lamin gene, while the lamin B2 gene on chromosome 19 arose during vertebrate evolution. In marked contrast to this conservation of gene structure are the results in the rapidly evolving genomes of Drosophila and Caenorhabditis elegans. Here the lamin genes have much fewer introns and these occur often at novel positions. In the single nematode lamin gene and the Drosophila lamin Dmo gene no intron position coincides with an intron in the sea anemone lamin gene.

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