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Title: Vertebrate Lineages Exhibit Diverse Patterns of Transposable Element Regulation and Expression across Tissues
Abstract Transposable elements (TEs) comprise a major fraction of vertebrate genomes, yet little is known about their expression and regulation across tissues, and how this varies across major vertebrate lineages. We present the first comparative analysis integrating TE expression and TE regulatory pathway activity in somatic and gametic tissues for a diverse set of 12 vertebrates. We conduct simultaneous gene and TE expression analyses to characterize patterns of TE expression and TE regulation across vertebrates and examine relationships between these features. We find remarkable variation in the expression of genes involved in TE negative regulation across tissues and species, yet consistently high expression in germline tissues, particularly in testes. Most vertebrates show comparably high levels of TE regulatory pathway activity across gonadal tissues except for mammals, where reduced activity of TE regulatory pathways in ovarian tissues may be the result of lower relative germ cell densities. We also find that all vertebrate lineages examined exhibit remarkably high levels of TE-derived transcripts in somatic and gametic tissues, with recently active TE families showing higher expression in gametic tissues. Although most TE-derived transcripts originate from inactive ancient TE families (and are likely incapable of transposition), such high levels of TE-derived RNA in the cytoplasm may have secondary, unappreciated biological relevance.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1655735 1655571
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ;
Pritham, Ellen
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Genome Biology and Evolution
Page Range / eLocation ID:
506 to 521
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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