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Synonymous codon usage varies considerably among Caenorhabditis elegans genes. Multivariate statistical analyses reveal a single major trend among genes. At one end of the trend lie genes with relatively unbiased codon usage. These genes appear to be lowly expressed, and their patterns of codon usage are consistent with mutational biases influenced by the(More)
The genomes of the spirochaetes Borrelia burgdorferi and Treponema pallidum show strong strand-specific skews in nucleotide composition, with the leading strand in replication being richer in G and T than the lagging strand in both species. This mutation bias results in codon usage and amino acid composition patterns that are significantly different between(More)
Toll-like receptors (TLRs) are a group of highly conserved molecules that initiate the innate immune response to pathogens by recognizing structural motifs expressed by microbes. We have identified a novel TLR, TLR15, by bioinformatic analysis of the chicken genome, which is distinct from any known vertebrate TLR and thus appears to be avian specific. The(More)
Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are essential components of innate immunity in a range of species from Drosophila to humans and are generally thought to act by disrupting the membrane integrity of microbes. In order to discover novel AMPs in the chicken, we have implemented a bioinformatic approach that involves the clustering of more than 420,000 chicken(More)
We have described a bioinformatic approach that involves the clustering of expressed sequence tags (ESTs) to reveal homologs of the Toll-like receptor (TLR) pathway in the chicken. Homology searching of proteins, predicted to be encoded by these EST clusters, resulted in the in silico identification of full-length sequences for Toll-interacting protein(More)
Synonymous codon usage in genes from the ascomycete (filamentous) fungus Aspergillus nidulans has been investigated. A total of 45 gene sequences has been analysed. Multivariate statistical analysis has been used to identify a single major trend among genes. At one end of this trend are lowly expressed genes, whereas at the other extreme lie genes known or(More)
Genes that belong to the same functional pathways are often packaged into operons in prokaryotes. However, aside from examples in nematode genomes, this form of transcriptional regulation appears to be absent in eukaryotes. Nevertheless, a number of recent studies have shown that gene order in eukaryotic genomes is not completely random, and that genes with(More)
Silent sites (positions that can undergo synonymous substitutions) in protein-coding genes can illuminate two evolutionary processes. First, despite being silent, they may be subject to natural selection. Among eukaryotes this is exemplified by yeast, where synonymous codon usage patterns are shaped by selection for particular codons that are more(More)
Alpha-defensins are a family of mammalian antimicrobial peptides that exhibit variable activity against a panel of microbes, including bacteria, fungi, and enveloped viruses. We have employed a maximum-likelihood approach to detect evidence of positive selection (adaptive evolution) in the evolution of these important molecules of the innate immune(More)