Sequencing and analysis of plastid genome in mycoheterotrophic orchid Neottia nidus-avis

Maria D. Logacheva, Mikhail I. Schelkunov, Aleksey A. Penin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Plastids are the semiautonomous organelles that possess their own genome inherited from the cyanobacterial ancestor. The primary function of plastids is photosynthesis so the structure and evolution of plastid genomes are extensively studied in photosynthetic plants. In contrast, little is known about the plastomes of nonphotosynthetic species. In higher plants, plastid genome sequences are available for only three strictly nonphotosynthetic species, the liverwort Aneura mirabilis and two flowering plants, Epifagus virginiana and Rhizanthella gardneri. We report here the complete sequence of a plastid genome of nonphotosynthetic mycoheterotrophic orchid Neottia nidus-avis, determined using 454 pyrosequencing technology. It was found to be reduced in both genome size and gene content; this reduction is however not as drastic as in the other nonphotosynthetic orchid, R. gardneri. Neottia plastome lacks all genes encoding photosynthetic proteins, RNA polymerase subunits but retains most genes of translational apparatus. Those genes that are retained have an increased rate of both synonymous and nonsynonymous substitutions but do not exhibit relaxation of purifying selection either in Neottia or in Rhizanthella.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1296-1303
Number of pages8
JournalGenome Biology and Evolution
Volume3
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Gene loss
  • Mycoheterotrophy
  • Neottia nidus-avis
  • Orchidaceae
  • Plastid genome
  • Substitution rate

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