exon shuffling question

Chris Colby colby at bu-bio.bu.edu
Wed Aug 12 21:54:51 EST 1992

According to the theory of exon shuffling, some genes are assembled
over evolutionary time by bringing together "pieces" (exons) of
other genes. Has any one picked an exon that seems common to
many proteins(*), put the sequences into PAUP or PHYLIP and 
constructed a phylogeny? It seems to me you could at least
postulate a sequence of how some exons diverged (and how some genes

A nice cross-check would be to construct the same phylogeny from the 
same exons in another species (assuming the exons diverged prior to 
the species). (You could check for gene conversion this way.)

Selective constraints and gene conversion would probably be
confounding factors along with the fact that the genes may have
diverged long ago (depending upon what exons you pick).

(*) within a single species

So, has anyone done this? Is it even worth doing?

Chris Colby 	---	 email: colby at bu-bio.bu.edu	---
"'My boy,' he said, 'you are descended from a long line of determined,
resourceful, microscopic tadpoles--champions every one.'"
 	--Kurt Vonnegut from "Galapagos"

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