Necessity Is the Mother of Invention: Ciliates, Transposons, and Transgenerational Inheritance

Allen, Sarah Elizabeth; Nowacki, Mariusz (2017). Necessity Is the Mother of Invention: Ciliates, Transposons, and Transgenerational Inheritance. Trends in genetics, 33(3), pp. 197-207. Elsevier Current Trends 10.1016/j.tig.2017.01.005

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Ciliates are a fascinating model system for the study of the interaction between eukaryotic germlines and somatic lines, especially with regard to the invasion and defence against transposable elements. They separate their germline and somatic line into two nuclei within the same cell, and they silence transposons and repetitive elements by way of deleting them from their somatic genome. This large-scale deletion event uses a series of intricate sequence targeting pathways involving small RNAs and transposases, part of which consists of a transnuclear comparison between maternal soma and daughter germline. We present recent progress in this dynamic field, and argue that these DNA targeting pathways provide an optimal system for the transgenerational inheritance of acquired traits. Ciliates thus also demonstrate the evolutionary value of transposable elements, both as sources of sequence diversity and also as drivers of adaptive evolution by necessitating defensive systems.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Cell Biology > Ciliate
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Cell Biology

UniBE Contributor:

Allen, Sarah Elizabeth and Nowacki, Mariusz

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology

ISSN:

0168-9525

Publisher:

Elsevier Current Trends

Funders:

[18] European Research Council
[4] Swiss National Science Foundation
[108] NCCR RNA & Disease

Language:

English

Submitter:

Mariusz Nowacki

Date Deposited:

22 Mar 2017 12:04

Last Modified:

22 Mar 2017 12:27

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.tig.2017.01.005

PubMed ID:

28174020

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.95693

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/95693

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