, Volume 271, Issue 5, pp 577-585
Date: 20 Apr 2004

The hAT -like DNA transposon DodoPi resides in a cluster of retro- and DNA transposons in the stramenopile Phytophthora infestans

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A family of transposable elements belonging to the hAT group of DNA transposons is described from an oomycete, the plant pathogen Phytophthora infestans. The family, named DodoPi, was identified by studying a hotspot for retro- and DNA transposon insertions adjacent to the mating type locus. The DodoPi family comprises a small number of full-length copies, each of which is 2.7 kb long and predicted to encode a transposase-like protein consisting of 617 amino acids, and several truncated copies. Both types contain 12-bp terminal inverted repeats and are flanked by 8-bp target site duplications. Despite the detection of a DodoPi transcript and of many polymorphisms between isolates, conclusive evidence of recent transposition was not obtained. A phylogenetic analysis indicated that DodoPi was novel, with only modest similarity to some elements from plants and fungi. Relatives were detected in only some members of the genus. This is the first DNA transposon identified in the stramenopile group of eukaryotes.

Communicated by C. P. Hollenberg