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Mutation dictates the tempo and mode of evolution, and like all traits, the mutation rate is subject to evolutionary modification. Here, we report refined estimates of the mutation rate for a prokaryote with an exceptionally small genome and for a unicellular eukaryote with a large genome. Combined with prior results, these estimates provide the basis for a(More)
Despite comprising much of the eukaryotic genome, few transposons are active, and they usually confer no benefit to the host. Through an exaggerated process of genome rearrangement, Oxytricha trifallax destroys 95% of its germline genome during development. This includes the elimination of all transposon DNA. We show that germline-limited transposase genes(More)
The macronuclear genome of the ciliate Oxytricha trifallax displays an extreme and unique eukaryotic genome architecture with extensive genomic variation. During sexual genome development, the expressed, somatic macronuclear genome is whittled down to the genic portion of a small fraction (∼5%) of its precursor "silent" germline micronuclear genome by a(More)
The rate at which new mutations arise in the genome is a key factor in the evolution and adaptation of species. Here we describe the rate and spectrum of spontaneous mutations for the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe, a key model organism with many similarities to higher eukaryotes. We undertook an ∼1700-generation mutation accumulation (MA)(More)
Genome-wide DNA rearrangements occur in many eukaryotes but are most exaggerated in ciliates, making them ideal model systems for epigenetic phenomena. During development of the somatic macronucleus, Oxytricha trifallax destroys 95% of its germ line, severely fragmenting its chromosomes, and then unscrambles hundreds of thousands of remaining fragments by(More)
Ti?El s are " cut-and-paste " transposable elements found in high copy number in the germline genomes of the ciliates Oxytricha fallax and 0. trifullux. TBEl " family " sequence (sequence of mixed polymerase chain reaction products generated using primers that match roughly half the TBEZs in host whole-cell DNA) was obtained from both host species. Although(More)
Mutation plays a central role in all evolutionary processes and is also the basis of genetic disorders. Established base-substitution mutation rates in eukaryotes range between ∼5 × 10(-10) and 5 × 10(-8) per site per generation, but here we report a genome-wide estimate for Paramecium tetraurelia that is more than an order of magnitude lower than any(More)
Programmed DNA rearrangements in the single-celled eukaryote Oxytricha trifallax completely rewire its germline into a somatic nucleus during development. This elaborate, RNA-mediated pathway eliminates noncoding DNA sequences that interrupt gene loci and reorganizes the remaining fragments by inversions and permutations to produce functional genes. Here,(More)
Internal eliminated sequences (IESs) often interrupt ciliate genes in the silent germline nucleus but are exactly excised and eliminated from the developing somatic nucleus from which genes are then expressed. Some long IESs are transposons, supporting the hypothesis that short IESs are ancient transposon relics. In light of that hypothesis and to explore(More)
We present the complete genomic sequence of the essential symbiont Polynucleobacter necessarius (Betaproteobacteria), which is a valuable case study for several reasons. First, it is hosted by a ciliated protist, Euplotes; bacterial symbionts of ciliates are still poorly known because of a lack of extensive molecular data. Second, the single species P.(More)