Discovery of a free-living chlorophyll d-producing cyanobacterium with a hybrid proteobacterial/cyanobacterial small-subunit rRNA gene

Scott R. Miller, Synny Augustine, Tien Le Olson, Robert E. Blankenship, Jeanne Selker, A. Michelle Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

132 Scopus citations

Abstract

Chlorophyll d-producing cyanobacteria are a recently described group of phototrophic bacteria that is a major focus of photosynthesis research, previously known only from marine environments in symbiosis with eukaryotes. We have discovered a free-living member of this group from a eutrophic hypersaline lake. Phylogenetic analyses indicated these strains are closely related to each other but not to prochlorophyte cyanobacteria that also use an alternative form of chlorophyll as the major light-harvesting pigment. We have also demonstrated that these bacteria acquired a fragment of the small-subunit rRNA gene encoding a conserved hairpin in the bacterial ribosome from a proteobacterial donor at least 10 million years before the present. Thus, our most widely used phylogenetic marker can be a mosaic of sequence fragments with widely divergent evolutionary histories.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)850-855
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume102
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 18 2005

Keywords

  • Cyanobacteria
  • Lateral gene transfer

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