Gene duplications and evolution of vertebrate voltage-gated sodium channels
Novak, Alicia E.
Jost, Manda C.
Taylor, Alison D.
Zakon, Harold H.
Ribera, Angeles B.
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Voltage-gated sodium channels underlie action potential generation in excitable tissue. To establish the evolutionary mechanisms that shaped the vertebrate sodium channel a-subunit (SCNA) gene family and their encoded Nav1 proteins, we identified all SCNA genes in several teleost species. Molecular cloning revealed that teleosts have eight SCNA genes, comparable to the number in another vertebrate lineage, mammals. Prior phylogenetic analyses had indicated that teleosts and tetrapods share four monophyletic groups of SCNA genes and that tandem duplications selectively expanded the number of genes in two of the four mammalian groups. However, the number of genes in each group varies between teleosts and tetrapods suggesting different evolutionary histories in the two vertebrate lineages. Our findings from phylogenetic analysis and chromosomal mapping of Danio rerio genes indicate that tandem duplications are an unlikely mechanism for generation of the extant teleost SCNA genes. Instead, analysis of other closely mapped genes in D. rerio supports the hypothesis that a whole genome duplication was involved in expansion of the SCNA gene family in teleosts. Interestingly, despite their different evolutionary histories, mRNA analyses demonstrated a conservation of expression patterns for SCNA orthologues in teleosts and tetrapods, suggesting functional conservation.
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2006. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Springer for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Journal of Molecular Evolution 63 (2006): 208-221, doi:10.1007/s00239-005-0287-9.
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