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Mob Genet Elements. 2012 Jul 1;2(4):179-183.

Mobile genetic elements in the bacterial phylum Acidobacteria.

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Los Alamos National Laboratory; Bioscience Division; Los Alamos NM USA.


Analysis of the genome of Candidatus Solibacter usitatus Ellin6076, a member of the phylum Acidobacteria, revealed a large number of genes associated with mobile genetic elements. These genes encoded transposases, insertion sequence elements and phage integrases. When the amino acid sequences of the mobile element-associated genes were compared, many of them had high (90-100%) amino acid sequence identities, suggesting that these genes may have recently duplicated and dispersed throughout the genome. Although phage integrase encoding genes were prevalent in the Can. S. usitatus Ellin6076 genome, no intact prophage regions were found. This suggests that the Can. S. usitatus Ellin6076 large genome arose by horizontal gene transfer via ancient bacteriophage and/or plasmid-mediated transduction, followed by widespread small-scale gene duplications, resulting in an increased number of paralogs encoding traits that could provide selective metabolic, defensive and regulatory advantages in the soil environment. Here we examine the mobile element repertoire of Can. S. usitatus Ellin6076 in comparison to other genomes from the Acidobacteria phylum, reviewing published studies and contributing some new analyses. We also discuss the presence and potential roles of mobile elements in members of this phylum that inhabit a variety of environments.

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