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Microsporidia are related to Fungi: Evidence from the largest subunit of RNA polymerase II and other proteins

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Robert Hirt, Professor T. Martin Embley FMedSci FRS

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Abstract

We have determined complete gene sequences encoding the largest subunit of the RNA polymerase II (RBP1) from two Microsporidia, Vairimorpha necatrix and Nosema locustae. Phylogenetic analyses of these and other RPB1 sequences strongly support the notion that Microsporidia are not early-diverging eukaryotes but instead are specifically related to Fungi. Our reexamination of elongation factors EF-1 alpha and EF-2 sequence data that had previously been taken as support for an early (Archezoan) divergence of these amitochondriate protists show such support to be weak and likely caused by artifacts in phylogenetic analyses. These EF data sets are, in fact, not inconsistent with a Microsporidia + Fungi relationship. In addition, we show that none of these proteins strongly support a deep divergence of Parabasalia and Metamonada, the other amitochondriate protist groups currently thought to compose early branches. Thus, the phylogenetic placement among eukaryotes for these protist taxa is in need of further critical examination.


Publication metadata

Author(s): Hirt RP, Logsdon JM, Healy B, Dorey MW, Doolittle WF, Embley TM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Proceedings Of the National Academy Of Sciences Of the United States Of America

Year: 1999

Volume: 96

Issue: 2

Pages: 580-585

ISSN (print): 0027-8424

Publisher: National Academy of Sciences

URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.96.2.580

DOI: 10.1073/pnas.96.2.580


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