Survey of transposable elements from rice genomic sequences

Plant J. 2001 Jan;25(2):169-79. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-313x.2001.00945.x.


Oryza sativa L. (domesticated rice) is a monocotyledonous plant, and its 430 Mb genome has been targeted for complete sequencing. We performed a high-resolution computer-based survey for transposable elements on 910 Kb of rice genomic DNA sequences. Both class I and II transposable elements were present, contributing 19.9% of the sequences surveyed. Class II elements greatly outnumbered class I elements (166 versus 22), although class I elements made up a greater percentage (12.2% versus 6.6%) of nucleotides surveyed. Several Mutator-like elements (MULEs) were identified, including rice elements that harbor truncated host cellular genes. MITEs (miniature inverted-repeat transposable elements) account for 71.6% of the mined transposable elements and are clearly the predominant type of transposable element in the sequences examined. Moreover, a putative Stowaway transposase has been identified based on shared sequence similarity with the mined MITEs and previously identified plant mariner-like elements (MLEs). Members of a group of novel rice elements resembling the structurally unusual members of the Basho family in Arabidopsis suggest a wide distribution of these transposons among plants. Our survey provides a preview of transposable element diversity and abundance in rice, and allows for comparison with genomes of other plant species.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Base Sequence
  • DNA Transposable Elements*
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Genome, Plant*
  • Oryza / genetics*
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid


  • DNA Transposable Elements
  • DNA, Complementary