Evolution of the translation machinery of green algae (Ulvophyceae, Chlorophyta)

01 January 2013 → 31 December 2015
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Medical and health sciences
    • Laboratory medicine
    • Laboratory medicine
    • Laboratory medicine
Project description

The process by which messenger RNA is translated into proteins is highly conserved across eukaryotes. Yet, lineage specific deviations of the translational apparatus exist, including alterations of the genetic code and lateral transfers of essential genes. Recently, we have shown several atypical features in the green algal class Ulvophyceae, including a deviant genetic code, highly divergent ribosomal RNA genes, and lateral transfer of elongation factor genes. I aim to get a better insight in the evolution of translation in the Ulvophyceae by analysing transcriptomic data from nine species covering the main ulvophycean lineages. These data will form the basis for in depth analysis of the genetic code, codon usage and specific genes (e.g. elongation factors, release factors and ribosomal proteins), as well as for constructing a reference phylogeny, which will enable to place the results in an evolutionary perspective.