Rapid birth-and-death evolution of the xenobiotic metabolizing NAT gene family in vertebrates with evidence of adaptive selection.

  • publication
  • 19-03-2013

Sabbagh A, Marin J, Veyssière C, Lecompte E, Boukouvala S, Poloni ES, Darlu P, Crouau-Roy B. BMC Evol. Biol. 2013 ;13():62. 1471-2148-13-62. 10.1186/1471-2148-13-62. PMC3601968.

The arylamine N-acetyltransferases (NATs) are a unique family of enzymes widely distributed in nature that play a crucial role in the detoxification of aromatic amine xenobiotics. Considering the temporal changes in the levels and toxicity of environmentally available chemicals, the metabolic function of NATs is likely to be under adaptive evolution to broaden or change substrate specificity over time, making NATs a promising subject for evolutionary analyses. In this study, we trace the molecular evolutionary history of the NAT gene family during the last ~450 million years of vertebrate evolution and define the likely role of gene duplication, gene conversion and positive selection in the evolutionary dynamics of this family.

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