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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Two new fungal inteins.

Until recently the only intein known to be encoded by the nuclear genome of a eukaryote was the VMA intein in the vacuolar ATPase precursor of several species of saccharomycete yeast. This intein has been intensively studied and much information has been gained about its structure, mode of action and evolutionary history. We recently reported a second nuclear intein, Cne PRP8, encoded within the PRP8 gene of the basidiomycete Cryptococcus neoformans. Subsequent studies have found allelic PRP8 inteins in several species of yeast and filamentous ascomycetes. Here we report two further, non-allelic, inteins from ascomycete species. The yeast Debaryomyces hansenii (which also has a VMA intein) has an intein encoded within the sequence of the glutamate synthase gene (GLT1). There are also inteins encoded in the homologous GLT1 genes of the yeast Candida (Pichia) guilliermondii and the filamentous fungus Podospora anserina. These allelic GLT1 inteins occupy exactly the same site in the glutamate synthase and all contain domains that indicate the presence of a homing endonuclease ( HEG). Podospora anserina, in addition, contains a second, non-allelic, intein encoded in the chitin synthase gene ( CHS2); this intein also contains a HEG domain. We describe the phylogenetic relationships among the four eukaryote nuclear encoded inteins (VMA, PRP8, GLT1 and CHS2). We also consider this phylogeny in the broader context of eubacterial, archaeal and eukaryote viral and organelle inteins.[1]


  1. Two new fungal inteins. Butler, M.I., Goodwin, T.J., Poulter, R.T. Yeast (2005) [Pubmed]
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