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PLoS One. 2011;6(8):e22269. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0022269. Epub 2011 Aug 1.

Multiple independent fusions of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase with enzymes in the pentose phosphate pathway.

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1
Biology Department, Bradley University, Peoria, Illinois, United States of America.

Abstract

Fusions of the first two enzymes in the pentose phosphate pathway, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) and 6-phosphogluconolactonase (6PGL), have been previously described in two distant clades, chordates and species of the malarial parasite Plasmodium. We have analyzed genome and expressed sequence data from a variety of organisms to identify the origins of these gene fusion events. Based on the orientation of the domains and range of species in which homologs can be found, the fusions appear to have occurred independently, near the base of the metazoan and apicomplexan lineages. Only one of the two metazoan paralogs of G6PD is fused, showing that the fusion occurred after a duplication event, which we have traced back to an ancestor of choanoflagellates and metazoans. The Plasmodium genes are known to contain a functionally important insertion that is not seen in the other apicomplexan fusions, highlighting this as a unique characteristic of this group. Surprisingly, our search revealed two additional fusion events, one that combined 6PGL and G6PD in an ancestor of the protozoan parasites Trichomonas and Giardia, and another fusing G6PD with phosphogluconate dehydrogenase (6PGD) in a species of diatoms. This study extends the range of species known to contain fusions in the pentose phosphate pathway to many new medically and economically important organisms.

PMID:
21829610
PMCID:
PMC3148214
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0022269
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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