A high-quality bonobo genome refines the analysis of hominid evolution.

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washington; seattle; genomics


The divergence of chimpanzee and bonobo provides one of the few examples of recent hominid speciation1,2. Here we describe a fully annotated, high-quality bonobo genome assembly, which was constructed without guidance from reference genomes by applying a multiplatform genomics approach. We generate a bonobo genome assembly in which more than 98% of genes are completely annotated and 99% of the gaps are closed, including the resolution of about half of the segmental duplications and almost all of the full-length mobile elements. We compare the bonobo genome to those of other great apes1,3-5 and identify more than 5,569 fixed structural variants that specifically distinguish the bonobo and chimpanzee lineages. We focus on genes that have been lost, changed in structure or expanded in the last few million years of bonobo evolution. We produce a high-resolution map of incomplete lineage sorting and estimate that around 5.1% of the human genome is genetically closer to chimpanzee or bonobo and that more than 36.5% of the genome shows incomplete lineage sorting if we consider a deeper phylogeny including gorilla and orangutan. We also show that 26% of the segments of incomplete lineage sorting between human and chimpanzee or human and bonobo are non-randomly distributed and that genes within these clustered segments show significant excess of amino acid replacement compared to the rest of the genome.


Institute for Systems Biology