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Detection of nucleolar organizer and mitochondrial DNA insertion regions based on the isochore map of Arabidopsis thaliana

Detection of nucleolar organizer and mitochondrial DNA insertion regions based on the isochore map of Arabidopsis thaliana

Febs Journal 272(13): 3328-3336

Eukaryotic genomes are composed of isochores, i.e. long sequences relatively homogeneous in GC content. In this paper, the isochore structure of Arabidopsis thaliana genome has been studied using a windowless technique based on the Z curve method and intuitive curves are drawn for all the five chromosomes. Using these curves, we can calculate the GC content at any resolution, even at the base level. It is observed that all the five chromosomes are composed of several GC-rich and AT-rich regions alternatively. Usually, these regions, named 'isochore-like regions', have large fluctuations in the GC content. Five isochores with little fluctuations are also observed. Detailed analyses have been performed for these isochores. A GC-rich 'isochore-like region' and a GC-isochore in chromosome II and IV, respectively, are the nucleolar organizer regions (NORs), and genes located in the two regions prefer to use GC-ending codons. Another GC-isochore located in chromosome II is a mitochondrial DNA insertion region, the position and size of this region is precisely predicted by the current method. The amino acid usage and codon preference of genes in this organellar-to-nuclear transfer region show significant difference from other regions. Moreover, the centromeres are located in GC-rich 'isochore-like regions' in all the five chromosomes. The current method can provide a useful tool for analyzing whole genomic sequences of eukaryotes.

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Accession: 004099320

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 15978039

DOI: 10.1111/j.1742-4658.2005.04748.x

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