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Molecular evolution of candidate male reproductive genes in the brown algal model Ectocarpus

Agnieszka Lipinska (UGent) , Els Van Damme (UGent) and Olivier De Clerck (UGent)
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BOF Grant 09/24 J/117
Abstract
Background: Evolutionary studies of genes that mediate recognition between sperm and egg contribute to our understanding of reproductive isolation and speciation. Surface receptors involved in fertilization are targets of sexual selection, reinforcement, and other evolutionary forces including positive selection. This observation was made across different lineages of the eukaryotic tree from land plants to mammals, and is particularly evident in free-spawning animals. Here we use the brown algal model species Ectocarpus (Phaeophyceae) to investigate the evolution of candidate gamete recognition proteins in a distant major phylogenetic group of eukaryotes. Results: Male gamete specific genes were identified by comparing transcriptome data covering different stages of the Ectocarpus life cycle and screened for characteristics expected from gamete recognition receptors. Selected genes were sequenced in a representative number of strains from distant geographical locations and varying stages of reproductive isolation, to search for signatures of adaptive evolution. One of the genes (Esi0130_0068) showed evidence of selective pressure. Interestingly, that gene displayed domain similarities to the receptor for egg jelly (REJ) protein involved in sperm-egg recognition in sea urchins. Conclusions: We have identified a male gamete specific gene with similarity to known gamete recognition receptors and signatures of adaptation. Altogether, this gene could contribute to gamete interaction during reproduction as well as reproductive isolation in Ectocarpus and is therefore a good candidate for further functional evaluation.
Keywords
Brown algae, Fertilization, Ectocarpus, Gamete receptor, Cell-cell recognition, SEX-BIASED GENES, PHAEOPHYCEAE SPERM RECEPTOR, POSITIVE SELECTION, MAXIMUM-LIKELIHOOD, GAMETE RECOGNITION, RAPID EVOLUTION, THALASSIOSIRA-WEISSFLOGII, SILICULOSUS PHAEOPHYCEAE, PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS, GENUS THALASSIOSIRA

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Citation

Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:

Chicago
Lipinska, Agnieszka, Els Van Damme, and Olivier De Clerck. 2016. “Molecular Evolution of Candidate Male Reproductive Genes in the Brown Algal Model Ectocarpus.” Bmc Evolutionary Biology 16.
APA
Lipinska, A., Van Damme, E., & De Clerck, O. (2016). Molecular evolution of candidate male reproductive genes in the brown algal model Ectocarpus. BMC EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY, 16.
Vancouver
1.
Lipinska A, Van Damme E, De Clerck O. Molecular evolution of candidate male reproductive genes in the brown algal model Ectocarpus. BMC EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY. 2016;16.
MLA
Lipinska, Agnieszka, Els Van Damme, and Olivier De Clerck. “Molecular Evolution of Candidate Male Reproductive Genes in the Brown Algal Model Ectocarpus.” BMC EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY 16 (2016): n. pag. Print.
@article{7151342,
  abstract     = {Background: Evolutionary studies of genes that mediate recognition between sperm and egg contribute to our understanding of reproductive isolation and speciation. Surface receptors involved in fertilization are targets of sexual selection, reinforcement, and other evolutionary forces including positive selection. This observation was made across different lineages of the eukaryotic tree from land plants to mammals, and is particularly evident in free-spawning animals. Here we use the brown algal model species Ectocarpus (Phaeophyceae) to investigate the evolution of candidate gamete recognition proteins in a distant major phylogenetic group of eukaryotes. 
Results: Male gamete specific genes were identified by comparing transcriptome data covering different stages of the Ectocarpus life cycle and screened for characteristics expected from gamete recognition receptors. Selected genes were sequenced in a representative number of strains from distant geographical locations and varying stages of reproductive isolation, to search for signatures of adaptive evolution. One of the genes (Esi0130\_0068) showed evidence of selective pressure. Interestingly, that gene displayed domain similarities to the receptor for egg jelly (REJ) protein involved in sperm-egg recognition in sea urchins. 
Conclusions: We have identified a male gamete specific gene with similarity to known gamete recognition receptors and signatures of adaptation. Altogether, this gene could contribute to gamete interaction during reproduction as well as reproductive isolation in Ectocarpus and is therefore a good candidate for further functional evaluation.},
  articleno    = {5},
  author       = {Lipinska, Agnieszka and Van Damme, Els and De Clerck, Olivier},
  issn         = {1471-2148},
  journal      = {BMC EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY},
  keyword      = {Brown algae,Fertilization,Ectocarpus,Gamete receptor,Cell-cell recognition,SEX-BIASED GENES,PHAEOPHYCEAE SPERM RECEPTOR,POSITIVE SELECTION,MAXIMUM-LIKELIHOOD,GAMETE RECOGNITION,RAPID EVOLUTION,THALASSIOSIRA-WEISSFLOGII,SILICULOSUS PHAEOPHYCEAE,PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS,GENUS THALASSIOSIRA},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {11},
  title        = {Molecular evolution of candidate male reproductive genes in the brown algal model Ectocarpus},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12862-015-0577-9},
  volume       = {16},
  year         = {2016},
}

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