Molecular phylogeny of the ETS gene family

Oncogene. 1999 Feb 11;18(6):1351-9. doi: 10.1038/sj.onc.1202444.

Abstract

We have constructed a molecular phylogeny of the ETS gene family. By distance and parsimony analysis of the ETS conserved domains we show that the family containing so far 29 different genes in vertebrates can be divided into 13 groups of genes namely ETS, ER71, GABP, PEA3, ERG, ERF, ELK, DETS4, ELF, ESE, TEL, YAN, SPI. Since the three dimensional structure of the ETS domain has revealed a similarity with the winged-helix-turn-helix proteins, we used two of them (CAP and HSF) to root the tree. This allowed us to show that the family can be divided into five subfamilies: ETS, DETS4, ELF, TEL and SPI. The ETS subfamily comprises the ETS, ER71, GABP, PEA3, ERG, ERF and the ELK groups which appear more related to each other than to any other ETS family members. The fact that some members of these subfamilies were identified in early metazoans such as diploblasts and sponges suggests that the diversification of ETS family genes predates the diversification of metazoans. By the combined analysis of both the ETS and the PNT domains, which are conserved in some members of the family, we showed that the GABP group, and not the ERG group, is the one most closely related to the ETS group. We also observed that the speed of accumulation of mutations in the various genes of the family is highly variable. Noticeably, paralogous members of the ELK group exhibit strikingly different evolutionary speed suggesting that the evolutionary pressure they support is very different.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Conserved Sequence
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Helix-Turn-Helix Motifs
  • Multigene Family*
  • Peptide Fragments / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / genetics*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-ets
  • Sequence Alignment / methods
  • Sequence Homology, Amino Acid
  • Transcription Factors / classification*
  • Transcription Factors / genetics*

Substances

  • Peptide Fragments
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-ets
  • Transcription Factors