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Genetica. 1994;93(1-3):161-70.

Horizontal transmission versus ancient origin: mariner in the witness box.

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Laboratoire Populations, Génétique et Evolution, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Gif/Yvette, France.


The transposable element mariner has been found in many species of Drosophilidae, several groups of Arthropods, and more recently in Platyhelminthes as well as in a phytopathogenic fungus. In the family Drosophilidae, the distribution of mariner among species shows many gaps, and its geographical distribution among endemic species is restricted to Asia and Africa. Among mariner elements in species within and outside the Drosophilidae, the similarities in nucleotide sequence and the amino acid sequence of the putative transposase reveal many phylogenetic inconsistencies compared with the conventional phylogeny of the host species. This paper discusses the contrasting hypotheses of horizontal transfer versus ancestral origin proposed to explain these results.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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