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HERV-W group evolutionary history in non-human primates: characterization of ERV-W orthologs in Catarrhini and related ERV groups in Platyrrhini
Univ Cagliari, Dept Life & Environm Sci, Cagliari.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0666-4361
Univ Cagliari, Dept Life & Environm Sci, Cagliari.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Sciences, Clinical Microbiology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6492-2491
Univ Saarland, Inst Human Genet, Homburg.
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2018 (English)In: BMC Evolutionary Biology, ISSN 1471-2148, E-ISSN 1471-2148, Vol. 18, article id 6Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: The genomes of all vertebrates harbor remnants of ancient retroviral infections, having affected the germ line cells during the last 100 million years. These sequences, named Endogenous Retroviruses (ERVs), have been transmitted to the offspring in a Mendelian way, being relatively stable components of the host genome even long after their exogenous counterparts went extinct. Among human ERVs (HERVs), the HERV-W group is of particular interest for our physiology and pathology. A HERV-W provirus in locus 7q21.2 has been coopted during evolution to exert an essential role in placenta, and the group expression has been tentatively linked to Multiple Sclerosis and other diseases. Following up on a detailed analysis of 213 HERV-W insertions in the human genome, we now investigated the ERV-W group genomic spread within primate lineages.

Results: We analyzed HERV-W orthologous loci in the genome sequences of 12 non-human primate species belonging to Simiiformes (parvorders Catarrhini and Platyrrhini), Tarsiiformes and to the most primitive Prosimians. Analysis of HERV-W orthologous loci in non-human Catarrhini primates revealed species-specific insertions in the genomes of Chimpanzee (3), Gorilla (4), Orangutan (6), Gibbon (2) and especially Rhesus Macaque (66). Such sequences were acquired in a retroviral fashion and, in the majority of cases, by L1-mediated formation of processed pseudogenes. There were also a number of LTR-LTR homologous recombination events that occurred subsequent to separation of Catarrhini sub-lineages. Moreover, we retrieved 130 sequences in Marmoset and Squirrel Monkeys (family Cebidae, Platyrrhini parvorder), identified as ERV1–1_CJa based on RepBase annotations, which appear closely related to the ERV-W group. Such sequences were also identified in Atelidae and Pitheciidae, representative of the other Platyrrhini families. In contrast, no ERV-W-related sequences were found in genome sequence assemblies of Tarsiiformes and Prosimians.

Conclusions: Overall, our analysis now provides a detailed picture of the ERV-W sequences colonization of the primate lineages genomes, revealing the exact dynamics of ERV-W locus formations as well as novel insights into the evolution and origin of the group.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 18, article id 6
Keywords [en]
Comparative genomics, Endogenous retroviruses, HERV-W, Syncytin, ERV1-1, Viral evolution, Monkey and ape retroviruses
National Category
Evolutionary Biology Genetics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-343855DOI: 10.1186/s12862-018-1125-1ISI: 000423128100003PubMedID: 29351742OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-343855DiVA, id: diva2:1187095
Available from: 2018-03-02 Created: 2018-03-02 Last updated: 2018-03-02Bibliographically approved

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Blomberg, Jonas

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