Genomic analysis of organismal complexity in the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri

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Analysis of the Volvox carteri genome reveals that this green alga's increased organismal complexity and multicellularity are associated with modifications in protein families shared with its unicellular ancestor, and not with large-scale innovations in protein coding capacity. The multicellular green alga Volvox carteri and its morphologically diverse close relatives (the volvocine algae) are uniquely suited for investigating the evolution of multicellularity and development. We sequenced the 138 Mb genome of V. carteri and compared its {approx}14,500 predicted proteins to those of its unicellular relative, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Despite fundamental differences in organismal complexity and life history, the two species have similar ... continued below

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Prochnik, Simon E.; Umen, James; Nedelcu, Aurora; Hallmann, Armin; Miller, Stephen M.; Nishii, Ichiro et al. July 1, 2010.

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Analysis of the Volvox carteri genome reveals that this green alga's increased organismal complexity and multicellularity are associated with modifications in protein families shared with its unicellular ancestor, and not with large-scale innovations in protein coding capacity. The multicellular green alga Volvox carteri and its morphologically diverse close relatives (the volvocine algae) are uniquely suited for investigating the evolution of multicellularity and development. We sequenced the 138 Mb genome of V. carteri and compared its {approx}14,500 predicted proteins to those of its unicellular relative, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Despite fundamental differences in organismal complexity and life history, the two species have similar protein-coding potentials, and few species-specific protein-coding gene predictions. Interestingly, volvocine algal-specific proteins are enriched in Volvox, including those associated with an expanded and highly compartmentalized extracellular matrix. Our analysis shows that increases in organismal complexity can be associated with modifications of lineage-specific proteins rather than large-scale invention of protein-coding capacity.

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  • Journal Name: Science-Research; Journal Volume: 329; Journal Issue: 5988

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  • Report No.: LBNL-4207E
  • Grant Number: DE-AC02-05CH11231
  • DOI: 10.1126/science.1188800 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1010539
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc833756

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  • July 1, 2010

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  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • June 15, 2016, 8:31 p.m.

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Prochnik, Simon E.; Umen, James; Nedelcu, Aurora; Hallmann, Armin; Miller, Stephen M.; Nishii, Ichiro et al. Genomic analysis of organismal complexity in the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri, article, July 1, 2010; Berkeley, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc833756/: accessed June 24, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.