Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Researchers find missing genes of ancient organism


Yale scientists report in the journal Nature that the "missing" genes for tRNA in an ancient parasite are made up by splicing together sequences in distant parts of the DNA genome.

The research led by Professor Dieter Söll in the Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry at Yale focuses on the most ancient organism with a known genome sequence. Nanoarchaeum equitans, is a member of a new phylogenetic kingdom in the Archaea containing organisms that are primitive, parasitic and extremophile, or notable for living in the most extreme environments.

Surprisingly, Söll’s team found that, although the genome of Nanoarchaeum lacks several intact tRNA genes, functional forms of those tRNAs can be made by copying from two distant DNA sequences -- and joining them.

The regions on the separate pieces, that allow them to find each other and splice, are somewhat similar to internal sequences found in tRNA genes of more complex organisms., These regions, termed introns, are sequences that are cut out of whole gene transcripts during the process of tRNA maturation. The known tRNA introns in organisms like yeast, however, appear to have no function. Therefore, modern tRNA introns might be remnants of an old essential process of tRNA biosynthesis.

"These results may point to extremophiles in the kingdom of Archaea as predecessors of more modern organisms that have gained a genetic load in the process of evolution," said Söll. "Or they may represent a specialization that has rid itself of genetic baggage to exist in extreme environments."

Understanding how primitive organisms like Nanoarchaea operate gives clues to -- but not proof of -- the relationship between modern and ancient organisms.

Janet Rettig Emanuel | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Novel mechanisms of action discovered for the skin cancer medication Imiquimod
21.10.2016 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Second research flight into zero gravity
21.10.2016 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>