Journal of Molecular Evolution

, Volume 64, Issue 5, pp 489–499 | Cite as

Variability of Nuclear SSU-rDNA Group Introns Within Septoria Species: Incongruence with Host Sequence Phylogenies

  • Nicolas Feau
  • Richard C. Hamelin
  • Louis BernierEmail author


We report structural features and distribution patterns of 26 different group I introns located at three distinct nucleotide positions in nuclear small subunit ribosomal DNA (SSU-rDNA) of 10 Septoria and 4 other anamorphic species related to the teleomorphic genus Mycosphaerella. Secondary structure and sequence characteristics assigned the introns to the common IC1 and IE groups. Intron distribution patterns and phylogenetic relationships strongly suggested that some horizontal transfer events have occurred among the closely related fungal species sampled. To test this hypothesis, we used a comparative approach of intron- and rDNA-based phylogenies through MP- and ML-based topology tests. Our results showed two statistically well-supported major incongruences between the intron and the equivalent internal transcribed spacer (ITS) tree comparisons made. Such absence of a co-evolutive history between group I introns and host sequences is discussed relatively to the intron structures, the mechanisms of intron movement, and the biology of the Mycosphaerella pathogenic fungi.


Group I introns Fungi Septoria Pseudocercospora Mycosphaerella Small subunit ribosomal DNA Horizontal transfer RNA secondary structure 



We are greatly indebted to Dr. Pascal Frey (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, Nancy, France) for constructive and helpful discussions. L. Bernier and R.C. Hamelin acknowledge support from a Fonds québécois de la recherche sur la nature et les technologies (FQRNT) team grant.

Supplementary material

239_2005_309_Supp.pdf (246 kb)
Supplementary material


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nicolas Feau
    • 1
    • 2
  • Richard C. Hamelin
    • 2
  • Louis Bernier
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Centre d’étude de la forêtUniversité LavalQuébecCanada
  2. 2.Service canadien des forêts, Ressources naturelles Canada, Centre de foresterie des LaurentidesQuébecCanada

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