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Evolutionary Analysis and Expression Profiling of Zebra Finch Immune Genes
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Population and Conservation Biology.
2010 (English)In: Genome Biology and Evolution, ISSN 1759-6653, Vol. 2, 781-790 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Genes of the immune system are generally considered to evolve rapidly due to host-parasite coevolution. They are therefore of great interest in evolutionary biology and molecular ecology. In this study, we manually annotated 144 avian immune genes from the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata) genome and conducted evolutionary analyses of these by comparing them with their orthologs in the chicken (Gallus gallus). Genes classified as immune receptors showed elevated d(N)/d(S) ratios compared with other classes of immune genes. Immune genes in general also appear to be evolving more rapidly than other genes, as inferred from a higher d(N)/d(S) ratio compared with the rest of the genome. Furthermore, ten genes (of 27) for which sequence data were available from at least three bird species showed evidence of positive selection acting on specific codons. From transcriptome data of eight different tissues, we found evidence for expression of 106 of the studied immune genes, with primary expression of most of these in bursa, blood, and spleen. These immune-related genes showed a more tissue-specific expression pattern than other genes in the zebra finch genome. Several of the avian immune genes investigated here provide strong candidates for in-depth studies of molecular adaptation in birds.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 2, 781-790 p.
Keyword [en]
genomics, bird, immunogenetics, next-generation sequencing, digital transcriptomics, Taeniopygia guttata
National Category
Natural Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-155593DOI: 10.1093/gbe/evq061ISI: 000291467300020OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-155593DiVA: diva2:427209
Available from: 2011-06-27 Created: 2011-06-27 Last updated: 2013-09-05Bibliographically approved

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Ekblom, Robert
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Population and Conservation Biology
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