The melatonin-related receptor GPR50 plays an important role in mammalian adaptive thermogenesis in response to calorie intake. The evolutionary history of the GPR50 gene is poorly understood in primates; however, it has been reported that GPR50 is the mammalian ortholog of Mel1c, which has been well characterized.
Cytoplasmic chloroplast DNA was explored to establish genetic relationships among Ficus carica cultivars and elucidate the molecular evolution of the species. The results suggest the occurrence of haplotype and nucleotide diversity. Conserved group I intron sequence motifs were detected and showed a common secondary structure, despite the presence of some mutations on their sequences. The neighbor-joining dendrogram showed a continuous diversity that characterizes local resources.
Short-type peptidoglycan (PGN)-recognition protein 1 (PGLYRP1), an innate immunity protein that directly breaks down the structure of microbial cell wall PGNs, plays an important role both in antibacterial defenses and several inflammatory diseases.
Adaptive variation in the melanocortin 1-receptor gene (MC1R), a key locus in melanogenesis, has been identified in some species of rodents. However, in others, MC1R has no causative role in pigmentation phenotypes despite their coat color variation. In this study, we characterized the rates and patterns of MC1R nucleotide and amino acid sequence evolution and, particularly, selective pressures in the separated domains of the protein using a comparative analysis of 43 species representing three major lineages of rodents with variable coat colors.
In spite of the remarkable diversity of HIV-1 env genes, several amino acids are extremely conserved, probably due to functional constraints. One example is the proline found at the second position of the GPGR motif. Several viruses, however, bear substitutions at this site, for instance, GWGR subtype B variant. GWGR viruses are described in Brazil since the beginning of the epidemics, but the extent of their dispersion or the geographical origin of the variant remains unknown.
Chagas disease is still a major public health problem in Latin America. Its causative agent, Trypanosoma cruzi, can be typed into three major groups, T. cruzi I, T. cruzi II and hybrids. These groups each have specific genetic characteristics and epidemiological distributions. Several highly virulent strains are found in the hybrid group; their origin is still a matter of debate. The null hypothesis is that the hybrids are of polyphyletic origin, evolving independently from various hybridization events.
Penaeid shrimps are an important resource in crustacean fisheries, representing more than the half of the gross production of shrimp worldwide. In the present study, we used a sample of wide-ranging diversity (41 shrimp species) and two mitochondrial markers (758 bp) to clarify the evolutionary relationships among Penaeidae genera. Three different methodologies of tree reconstruction were employed in the study: maximum likelihood, neighbor joining and Bayesian analysis.
We report the first major histocompatibility complex (MHC) DQB1 sequences for the two species of pink river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis and Inia boliviensis) inhabiting the Amazon and Orinoco River basins. These sequences were found to be polymorphic within the Inia genus and showed shared homology with cetacean DQB-1 sequences, especially, those of the Monodontidae and Phocoenidae.