Blog
About

0
views
0
recommends
+1 Recommend
0 collections
    0
    shares
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: not found

      Evolutionary dynamics of chloroplast genomes in low light: a case study of the endolithic green algaOstreobium quekettii

      Preprint

      Read this article at

      ScienceOpenPublisher
      Bookmark
          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.

          Abstract

          Some photosynthetic organisms live in extremely low light environments. Light limitation is associated with selective forces as well as reduced exposure to mutagens, and over evolutionary timescales it can leave a footprint on species genome. Here we present the chloroplast genomes of four green algae (Bryopsidales, Ulvophyceae), including the endolithic (limestone-boring) alga Ostreobium quekettii, which is a low light specialist. We use phylogenetic models and comparative genomic tools to investigate whether the chloroplast genome of Ostreobium corresponds to our expectations of how low light would affect genome evolution. Ostreobium has the smallest and most gene-dense chloroplast genome among Ulvophyceae reported to date, matching our expectation that light limitation would impose resource constraints. Rates of molecular evolution are significantly slower along the phylogenetic branch leading to Ostreobium, in agreement with the expected effects of low light and energy levels on molecular evolution. Given the exceptional ability of our model organism to photosynthesize under extreme low light conditions, we expected to observe positive selection in genes related to the photosynthetic machinery. However, we observed stronger purifying selection in these genes, which might either reflect a lack of power to detect episodic positive selection followed by purifying selection and/or a strengthening of purifying selection due to the loss of a gene related to light sensitivity. Besides shedding light on the genome dynamics associated with a low light lifestyle, this study helps to resolve the role of environmental factors in shaping the diversity of genome architectures observed in nature.

          Related collections

          Author and article information

          Journal
          bioRxiv
          May 07 2016
          Article
          10.1101/049833
          © 2016
          Product

          Evolutionary Biology, Forensic science

          Comments

          Comment on this article