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Gene Content Evolution in the Arthropods

By Gregg W.C. Thomas, Elias Dohmen, Daniel S.T. Hughes, Shwetha C. Murali, Monica Poelchau, Karl Glastad, Clare A. Anstead, Nadia A. Ayoub, Phillip Batterham, Michelle Bellair, Gretta J Binford, Hsu Chao, Yolanda H Chen, Christopher Childers, Huyen Dinh, Harshavardhan Doddapaneni, Jian J Duan, Shannon Dugan, Lauren A Esposito, Markus Friedrich, Jessica Garb, Robin B. Gasser, Michael A.D. Goodisman, Dawn E Gundersen-Rindal, Yi Han, Alfred M Handler, Masatsugu Hatakeyama, Lars Hering, Wayne B Hunter, Panagiotis Ioannidis, Joy C Jayaseelan, Divya Kalra, Abderrahman Khila, Pasi K Korhonen, Carol Eunmi Lee, Chien-Yueh Lee, Yiyuan Li, Amelia R. I. Lindsey, Georg Mayer, Alistair P McGregor, Duane D. McKenna, Bernhard Misof, Mala Munidasa, Monica Munoz-Torres, Donna Muzny, Oliver Niehuis, Nkechinyere Osuji-Lacy, Subba R. Palli, Kristen A. Panfilio, Matthias Pechmann, Trent Perry, Ralph S. Peters, Helen C Poynton, Nikola-Michael Prpic, Jiaxin Qu, Dorith Rotenberg, Coby Schal, Sean D Schoville, Erin D Scully, Evette Skinner, Daniel B Sloan, Richard Stouthamer, Michael R Strand, Nikolaus U. Szucsich, Asela Wijeratne, Neil D. Young, Eduardo Enrique Zattara, Joshua B. Benoit, Evgeny Zdobnov, Michael E. Pfrender, Kevin J Hackett, John Haynes Werren, Kim C Worley, Richard A. Gibbs, Ariel D. Chipman, Robert M Waterhouse, Erich Bornberg-Bauer, Matthew W. Hahn, Stephen Richards

Posted 04 Aug 2018
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/382945 (published DOI: 10.1186/s13059-019-1925-7)

Background Arthropods comprise the largest and most diverse phylum on Earth and play vital roles in nearly every ecosystem. Their diversity stems in part from variations on a conserved body plan, resulting from and recorded in adaptive changes in the genome. Dissection of the genomic record of sequence change enables broad questions regarding genome evolution to be addressed, even across hyper-diverse taxa within arthropods. Results Using 76 whole genome sequences representing 21 orders spanning more than 500 million years of arthropod evolution, we document changes in gene and protein domain content and provide temporal and phylogenetic context for interpreting these innovations. We identify many novel gene families that arose early in the evolution of arthropods and during the diversification of insects into modern orders. We reveal unexpected variation in patterns of DNA methylation across arthropods and examples of gene family and protein domain evolution coincident with the appearance of notable phenotypic and physiological adaptations such as flight, metamorphosis, sociality and chemoperception. Conclusions These analyses demonstrate how large-scale comparative genomics can provide broad new insights into the genotype to phenotype map and generate testable hypotheses about the evolution of animal diversity.

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