The evolution of the nuclear receptor superfamily.

  title={The evolution of the nuclear receptor superfamily.},
  author={H{\'e}ctor Escriv{\'a} and St{\'e}phanie Bertrand and Vincent Laudet},
  journal={Essays in biochemistry},
Nuclear receptors form a superfamily of ligand-activated transcription factors implicated in various physiological functions from development to homoeostasis. Nuclear receptors share a common evolutionary history revealed by their conserved structure and by their high degree of sequence conservation. Here we review the latest advances on the evolution of nuclear receptors by addressing the following questions. What is known about the appearance and diversification of nuclear hormone receptors… 

Figures from this paper

What are nuclear receptor ligands?

  • F. Sladek
  • Biology
    Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology
  • 2011

Nuclear receptor-like transcription factors in fungi.

Findings indicate that nuclear receptor-like ligand-dependent gene regulatory mechanisms emerged early during eukaryotic evolution, and provide the impetus for further detailed studies of the possible evolutionary and mechanistic relationships of fungal zinc cluster transcription factors and metazoan nuclear receptors.

Nuclear Receptor Genes

Nuclear receptor superfamily members are metazoan innovations which are present in all living meetingazoan phyla and have evolved, and is still evolving, to mediate nearly every facet of meetazoan life.

Nuclear hormone receptors in chordates

Nuclear Receptor Genes: Evolution

Nuclear receptor superfamily members are metazoan innovations which are present in all living metazoa phyla and have evolved, and is still evolving, to mediate nearly every facet of meetazoan life.

Insect nuclear receptors.

A renewed focus on functional analysis of the isoforms of insect NRs is needed to understand the diverse roles of these transcription factors in embryogenesis, metamorphosis, reproduction, and homeostasis.

eview hat are nuclear receptor ligands ?

Nuclear receptors (NRs) are a family of highly conserved transcription factors that regulate transcription in response to small lipophilic compounds. They play a role in every aspect of development,

Nuclear Receptors: Small Molecule Sensors that Coordinate Growth, Metabolism and Reproduction.

The Nuclear Receptor superfamily is reviewed to highlight both the common as well as newly emerging traits and functions that characterize this particularly unique and important TF family.

Nuclear receptors: one big family.

  • I. McEwan
  • Biology
    Methods in molecular biology
  • 2009
It is just over 20 years since the first steroid receptor cDNAs were cloned, a development that led to the birth of a superfamily of ligand activated transcription factors: the nuclear receptors, which act as sensors of the extracellular and intracellular environment.

C. elegans Nuclear Receptors: Insights into Life Traits

This work discusses in detail how several C. elegans NRs integrate intrinsic and extrinsic signals to regulate the dauer diapause and longevity, molting, and heterochronic circuits of development, and draws parallels to similar in vivo endocrine regulated processes in other animals.



Ligand binding and nuclear receptor evolution

Arguments from phylogenetic, functional and structural studies are presented that support the hypothesis that there have been several independent gains of ligand‐binding ability of nuclear receptors during metazoan evolution.


The first members of the nuclear receptor superfamily were probably orphan receptors that later on gained the ability to bind a ligand, and the observed that SmFTZ-F1 and SmRXR are expressed at different levels along the life cycle of the parasitic flatworm Schistosoma mansoni suggests that these receptors may play a role in the control of the development of this organism.

The nuclear receptor ligand-binding domain: structure and function.

Nuclear receptors are markers of animal genome evolution

Nuclear receptors are a very good model to investigate the dating and functional role of gene duplication, since they are dispersed in the genome, allow robust phylogenetic reconstruction, and are functionnaly well characterized, with different adaptations for different paralogs.

Evolution of the nuclear receptor gene superfamily.

A complex evolutionary history for nuclear receptor genes in which gene duplication events and swapping between domains of different origins took place is suggested.

Evolution of vertebrate steroid receptors from an ancestral estrogen receptor by ligand exploitation and serial genome expansions

  • J. W. Thornton
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
  • 2001
A model of ligand exploitation is supported in which the terminal ligand in a biosynthetic pathway is the first for which a receptor evolves; selection for this hormone also selects for the synthesis of intermediates despite the absence of receptors, and duplicated receptors then evolve affinity for these substances.

The nuclear receptor superfamily has undergone extensive proliferation and diversification in nematodes.

The nuclear receptor (NR) superfamily is the most abundant class of transcriptional regulators encoded in the Caenorhabditis elegans genome, with >200 predicted genes revealed by the screens and

Phylogeny of the steroid receptor superfamily.

Both PAUP and N-J evolutionary trees showed that the receptors within the subgroups of a major sublineage tend to recognize hormones of very similar structure, which suggests that the relative phylogenetic position of orphans to well-characterized receptors might be exploited to predict the type of ligand they would recognize.

How many nuclear hormone receptors are there in the human genome?