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Genome analysis of the platypus reveals unique signatures of evolution

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Version 2 2024-06-03, 10:34
Version 1 2016-10-21, 23:25
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-03, 10:34 authored by Julie SharpJulie Sharp, KR Nicholas, WC Warren, LW Hillier, JA Marshall Graves, E Birney, CP Ponting, F Grützner, K Belov, W Miller, L Clarke, AT Chinwalla, S-P Yang, A Heger, DP Locke, P Miethke, PD Waters, F Veyrunes, L Fulton, B Fulton
We present a draft genome sequence of the platypus, Ornithorhynchus anatinus. This monotreme exhibits a fascinating combination of reptilian and mammalian characters. For example, platypuses have a coat of fur adapted to an aquatic lifestyle; platypus females lactate, yet lay eggs; and males are equipped with venom similar to that of reptiles. Analysis of the first monotreme genome aligned these features with genetic innovations. We find that reptile and platypus venom proteins have been co-opted independently from the same gene families; milk protein genes are conserved despite platypuses laying eggs; and immune gene family expansions are directly related to platypus biology. Expansions of protein, non-protein-coding RNA and microRNA families, as well as repeat elements, are identified. Sequencing of this genome now provides a valuable resource for deep mammalian comparative analyses, as well as for monotreme biology and conservation.

History

Journal

Nature

Volume

453

Pagination

175-183

Location

London, Eng.

eISSN

1476-4687

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2008, Nature Publishing Group

Publisher

Nature Publishing Group