Selfish DNA and the origin of introns

  title={Selfish DNA and the origin of introns},
  author={T Cavalier-smith},

A novel intron site in the triosephosphate isomerase gene from the mosquito Culex tarsalis

The TPI gene from the mosquito, Culex tarsalis, contains an intron in a unique position that was predicted by W. Gilbert2 and the exon shuffling hypothesis, and is found to be consistent with the 'introns late' view.

Obcells as Proto-Organisms: Membrane Heredity, Lithophosphorylation, and the Origins of the Genetic Code, the First Cells, and Photosynthesis

It is argued that proteins were primarily structural not enzymatic and that the first biological membranes consisted of amphipathic peptidyl-tRNAs and prebiotic mixed lipids, and that a symbiosis of membranes, replicators, and catalysts probably mediated the origin of the code and the transition from a nucleic acid world of independent molecular replicators to aucleic acid/protein/lipid world of reproducing organisms.

The Origin and Function of Intervening Sequences in DNA: A Review

Current data support the second view, suggesting that although introns have played an important role in the evolution of new functional proteins, this role cannot be seen as an adaptation, at least at the level of organisms within a species.

Human Transaldolase-associated Repetitive Elements Are Transcribed by RNA Polymerase III*

The results suggest RNA polymerase III-mediated transcription of TARE may be a source of repetitive elements, contributing to distinct genes and thus shaping the human genome.

Reverse Transcriptase Activities in Mycelial Fungi

Reverse transcriptases (RT) are RNA-dependent DNA polymerases which were discovered in retroviruses more than 20 years ago and have been designated retroelements mainly on their sequence similarity to retroviral reverse transcriptases.

On the concept of biological function, junk DNA and the gospels of ENCODE and Graur et al.

An old hypothesis on the evolution of genome size and on the role of so called ‘junk DNA’ (jDNA), which might explain C-value enigma is brought forward.



Rat preprocarboxypeptidase A: cDNA sequence and preliminary characterization of the gene.

  • C. QuintoM. Quiroga W. Rutter
  • Biology, Chemistry
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 1982
An almost complete mRNA sequence has been deduced that predicts a polypeptide having 78% amino acid sequence homology with bovine carboxypeptidase A and there is no evident relationship between the localization of intervening sequences in the gene and functional/structural domains of the protein.

Nucleotide sequence of a Euglena gracilis chloroplast genome region coding for the elongation factor Tu; evidence for a spliced mRNA.

A 1.95 kb transcription product of the Euglena gracilis chloroplast DNA fragment Eco-N + Q is characterized by S1 nuclease analysis and DNA sequencing and it is shown that it is the product of three splicing events.

Chlamydomonas reinhardii gene for the 32 000 mol. wt. protein of photosystem II contains four large introns and is located entirely within the chloroplast inverted repeat

The chloroplast psbA gene from the green unicellular alga Chlamydomonas reinhardii has been localized, cloned and sequenced. This gene codes for the rapidly‐labeled 32‐kd protein of photosystem II,

Nuclear volume control by nucleoskeletal DNA, selection for cell volume and cell growth rate, and the solution of the DNA C-value paradox.

Eukaryote DNA can be divided into genic DNA, which codes for proteins (or serves as recognition sites for proteins involved in transcription, replication and recombination), and nucleoskeletal DNA (S-DNA), which exists only because of its nucleoskeleton role in determining the nuclear volume.

Split genes and RNA splicing.

A number of genes in higher organisms and in their viruses appear to be split. That is, they have "nonsense" stretches of DNA interspersed within the sense DNA. The cell produces a full RNA

The anticodon of the maize chloroplast gene for tRNAUAALeu is split by a large intron

The unusual position of the intron in this maize chloroplast tRNA gene suggests a splicing model different from that generally accepted for eukaryotic split tRNA genes.

Chloroplast gene for Mr 32000 polypeptide of photosystem II in Euglena gracilis is interrupted by four introns with conserved boundary sequences.

The gene for the Mr 32000 herbicide binding polypeptide of photosystem II has previously been mapped to the 5 kbp EcoRI fragment Eco I of Euglena gracilis chloroplast DNA. The nucleotide sequence of

Relationship between the total size of exons and introns in protein-coding genes of higher eukaryotes.

  • H. NaoraN. Deacon
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 1982
It is proposed that conservation of sequences, which is required by the family members, internal repeats, or the entire gene, would actually motivate the removal of introns.