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washington; isb; Animals; Cebidae; Aotidae; Alu Elements; Evolution, Molecular; Cercopithecidae; Nucleotides


The history of Alu retroposons has been choreographed by the systematic accumulation of inherited diagnostic nucleotide substitutions to form discrete subfamilies, each having a distinct nucleotide consensus sequence. The oldest subfamily, AluJ, gave rise to AluS after the split between Strepsirrhini and what would become Catarrhini and Platyrrhini. The AluS lineage gave rise to AluY in catarrhines and to AluTa in platyrrhines. Platyrrhine Alu subfamilies Ta7, Ta10, and Ta15 were assigned names based on a standardized nomenclature. However, with the subsequent intensification of whole genome sequencing (WGS), large scale analyses to characterize Alu subfamilies using the program COSEG identified entire lineages of subfamilies simultaneously. The first platyrrhine genome with WGS, the common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus; [caljac3]), resulted in Alu subfamily names sf0 to sf94 in an arbitrary order. Although easily resolved by alignment of the consensus sequences, this naming convention can become increasingly confusing as more genomes are independently analyzed. In this study, we reported Alu subfamily characterization for the platyrrhine three-family clade of Cebidae, Callithrichidae, and Aotidae. We investigated one species/genome from each recognized family of Callithrichidae and Aotidae and of both subfamilies (Cebinae andSaimiriinae) of the family Cebidae. Furthermore, we constructed a comprehensive network of Alu subfamily evolution within the three-family clade of platyrrhines to provide a working framework for future research. Alu expansion in the three-family clade has been dominated by AluTa15 and its derivatives.


Institute for Systems Biology