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1.  Chronology of Deep Nodes in the Neotropical Primate Phylogeny: Insights from Mitochondrial Genomes 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(12):e51699.
The evolution of Neotropical Primates (NP) is permeated by factors associated with the pattern of diversification and the biogeography of the major lineages. These questions can be better understood by providing a robust estimate of the chronological scenario of NP evolution, a reason why molecular dating methods have been widely applied. One aspect of especial interest is the timing of diversification of the major NP lineages (pitheciids, atelids and cebids), which may have resulted from rapid episodes of adaptive radiation, a question that requires NP divergence time estimates with accurate statistical certainty. In this study, we evaluated the primate timescale focused on the age of nodes of NP radiation. We investigated the performance of complete primate mitochondrial genomes as traditional molecular markers of primate evolution and further including original mitochondrial data from the endangered muriqui, Brachyteles arachnoides (Accession No. JX262672). Comparisons of the age estimates at NP nodes based on mitochondrial genomes with those obtained from a nuclear supermatrix showed similar degrees of uncertainty. Further molecular data and more informative calibration priors are required for a more precise understanding of the early NP diversification.
PMCID: PMC3522728  PMID: 23272145
2.  A Molecular Phylogeny of Living Primates 
PLoS Genetics  2011;7(3):e1001342.
Comparative genomic analyses of primates offer considerable potential to define and understand the processes that mold, shape, and transform the human genome. However, primate taxonomy is both complex and controversial, with marginal unifying consensus of the evolutionary hierarchy of extant primate species. Here we provide new genomic sequence (∼8 Mb) from 186 primates representing 61 (∼90%) of the described genera, and we include outgroup species from Dermoptera, Scandentia, and Lagomorpha. The resultant phylogeny is exceptionally robust and illuminates events in primate evolution from ancient to recent, clarifying numerous taxonomic controversies and providing new data on human evolution. Ongoing speciation, reticulate evolution, ancient relic lineages, unequal rates of evolution, and disparate distributions of insertions/deletions among the reconstructed primate lineages are uncovered. Our resolution of the primate phylogeny provides an essential evolutionary framework with far-reaching applications including: human selection and adaptation, global emergence of zoonotic diseases, mammalian comparative genomics, primate taxonomy, and conservation of endangered species.
Author Summary
Advances in human biomedicine, including those focused on changes in genes triggered or disrupted in development, resistance/susceptibility to infectious disease, cancers, mechanisms of recombination, and genome plasticity, cannot be adequately interpreted in the absence of a precise evolutionary context or hierarchy. However, little is known about the genomes of other primate species, a situation exacerbated by a paucity of nuclear molecular sequence data necessary to resolve the complexities of primate divergence over time. We overcome this deficiency by sequencing 54 nuclear gene regions from DNA samples representing ∼90% of the diversity present in living primates. We conduct a phylogenetic analysis to determine the origin, evolution, patterns of speciation, and unique features in genome divergence among primate lineages. The resultant phylogenetic tree is remarkably robust and unambiguously resolves many long-standing issues in primate taxonomy. Our data provide a strong foundation for illuminating those genomic differences that are uniquely human and provide new insights on the breadth and richness of gene evolution across all primate lineages.
PMCID: PMC3060065  PMID: 21436896
3.  Evolution of Cyclophilin A and TRIMCyp Retrotransposition in New World Primates 
Journal of Virology  2005;79(23):14998-15003.
Host cell factors modulate retroviral infections. Among those, cyclophilin A (CypA) promotes virus infectivity by facilitating virus uncoating or capsid unfolding or by preventing retroviral capsid interaction with cellular restriction factors. In Aotus species, a retrotransposed copy of CypA inserted into the tripartite motif 5 (TRIM5) gene encodes a fusion protein which may block human immunodeficiency virus type 1 by targeting the incoming virus to ubiquitin-ligated degradation or by interfering with normal uncoating of the incoming particle, rendering those monkeys resistant to infection. In this study, we have extensively analyzed representative specimens from all New World primate genera and shown that the retrotransposed CypA copy is only present in Aotus. We have shown that this inserted copy diverged from its original counterpart and that this occurred prior to Aotus radiation, although no positive selection was observed. Finally, our data underscores the need for a precise taxonomic identification of primate species used as models for retroviral infections and novel antiviral approaches.
PMCID: PMC1287578  PMID: 16282502
4.  Swine and Poultry Pathogens: the Complete Genome Sequences of Two Strains of Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and a Strain of Mycoplasma synoviae†  
Vasconcelos, Ana Tereza R. | Ferreira, Henrique B. | Bizarro, Cristiano V. | Bonatto, Sandro L. | Carvalho, Marcos O. | Pinto, Paulo M. | Almeida, Darcy F. | Almeida, Luiz G. P. | Almeida, Rosana | Alves-Filho, Leonardo | Assunção, Enedina N. | Azevedo, Vasco A. C. | Bogo, Maurício R. | Brigido, Marcelo M. | Brocchi, Marcelo | Burity, Helio A. | Camargo, Anamaria A. | Camargo, Sandro S. | Carepo, Marta S. | Carraro, Dirce M. | de Mattos Cascardo, Júlio C. | Castro, Luiza A. | Cavalcanti, Gisele | Chemale, Gustavo | Collevatti, Rosane G. | Cunha, Cristina W. | Dallagiovanna, Bruno | Dambrós, Bibiana P. | Dellagostin, Odir A. | Falcão, Clarissa | Fantinatti-Garboggini, Fabiana | Felipe, Maria S. S. | Fiorentin, Laurimar | Franco, Gloria R. | Freitas, Nara S. A. | Frías, Diego | Grangeiro, Thalles B. | Grisard, Edmundo C. | Guimarães, Claudia T. | Hungria, Mariangela | Jardim, Sílvia N. | Krieger, Marco A. | Laurino, Jomar P. | Lima, Lucymara F. A. | Lopes, Maryellen I. | Loreto, Élgion L. S. | Madeira, Humberto M. F. | Manfio, Gilson P. | Maranhão, Andrea Q. | Martinkovics, Christyanne T. | Medeiros, Sílvia R. B. | Moreira, Miguel A. M. | Neiva, Márcia | Ramalho-Neto, Cicero E. | Nicolás, Marisa F. | Oliveira, Sergio C. | Paixão, Roger F. C. | Pedrosa, Fábio O. | Pena, Sérgio D. J. | Pereira, Maristela | Pereira-Ferrari, Lilian | Piffer, Itamar | Pinto, Luciano S. | Potrich, Deise P. | Salim, Anna C. M. | Santos, Fabrício R. | Schmitt, Renata | Schneider, Maria P. C. | Schrank, Augusto | Schrank, Irene S. | Schuck, Adriana F. | Seuanez, Hector N. | Silva, Denise W. | Silva, Rosane | Silva, Sérgio C. | Soares, Célia M. A. | Souza, Kelly R. L. | Souza, Rangel C. | Staats, Charley C. | Steffens, Maria B. R. | Teixeira, Santuza M. R. | Urmenyi, Turan P. | Vainstein, Marilene H. | Zuccherato, Luciana W. | Simpson, Andrew J. G. | Zaha, Arnaldo
Journal of Bacteriology  2005;187(16):5568-5577.
This work reports the results of analyses of three complete mycoplasma genomes, a pathogenic (7448) and a nonpathogenic (J) strain of the swine pathogen Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and a strain of the avian pathogen Mycoplasma synoviae; the genome sizes of the three strains were 920,079 bp, 897,405 bp, and 799,476 bp, respectively. These genomes were compared with other sequenced mycoplasma genomes reported in the literature to examine several aspects of mycoplasma evolution. Strain-specific regions, including integrative and conjugal elements, and genome rearrangements and alterations in adhesin sequences were observed in the M. hyopneumoniae strains, and all of these were potentially related to pathogenicity. Genomic comparisons revealed that reduction in genome size implied loss of redundant metabolic pathways, with maintenance of alternative routes in different species. Horizontal gene transfer was consistently observed between M. synoviae and Mycoplasma gallisepticum. Our analyses indicated a likely transfer event of hemagglutinin-coding DNA sequences from M. gallisepticum to M. synoviae.
PMCID: PMC1196056  PMID: 16077101

Results 1-4 (4)