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Mol Biol Evol 2021 Mar 09;383:981-985. doi: 10.1093/molbev/msaa262.
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Mitogenomes Reveal Alternative Initiation Codons and Lineage-Specific Gene Order Conservation in Echinoderms.

Quek ZBR , Chang JJM , Ip YCA , Chan YKS , Huang D .

The mitochondrial genetic code is much more varied than the standard genetic code. The invertebrate mitochondrial code, for instance, comprises six initiation codons, including five alternative start codons. However, only two initiation codons are known in the echinoderm and flatworm mitochondrial code, the canonical ATG and alternative GTG. Here, we analyzed 23 Asteroidea mitogenomes, including ten newly sequenced species and unambiguously identified at least two other start codons, ATT and ATC, both of which also initiate translation of mitochondrial genes in other invertebrates. These findings underscore the diversity of the genetic code and expand upon the suite of initiation codons among echinoderms to avoid erroneous annotations. Our analyses have also uncovered the remarkable conservation of gene order among asteroids, echinoids, and holothuroids, with only an interchange between two gene positions in asteroids over ∼500 Ma of echinoderm evolution.

PubMed ID: 33027524
PMC ID: PMC7947835
Article link: Mol Biol Evol

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References [+] :
Allio, MitoFinder: Efficient automated large-scale extraction of mitogenomic data in target enrichment phylogenomics. 2020, Pubmed