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Review
, 22 (2), 90-5

Bacteriophage Origins of Mitochondrial Replication and Transcription Proteins

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Review

Bacteriophage Origins of Mitochondrial Replication and Transcription Proteins

Timothy E Shutt et al. Trends Genet.

Abstract

Mounting evidence suggests that key components of the mitochondrial transcription and replication apparatus are derived from the T-odd lineage of bacteriophage rather than from an alpha-Proteobacterium, as the endosymbiont hypothesis would predict. We propose that several mitochondrial replication genes were acquired together from an ancestor of T-odd phage early in the evolution of the eukaryotic cell, at the time of the mitochondrial endosymbiosis. We further propose that at a later stage the single-subunit RNA polymerase, originally acquired for mitochondrial DNA replication, was co-opted to serve in mitochondrial transcription.

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