Mouse duplicate genes are as essential as singletons

Trends Genet. 2007 Aug;23(8):378-81. doi: 10.1016/j.tig.2007.05.006. Epub 2007 Jun 7.


Duplicate genes in mouse are widely thought to have functional redundancy, and to be less essential than singleton genes. We analyzed nearly 3900 individually knocked out mouse genes and discovered that the proportion of essential genes is approximately 55% in both singletons and duplicates. This suggests that mammalian duplicates rarely compensate for each other, and that the absence of phenotypes in mice deficient for a duplicate gene should not be automatically attributed to paralogous compensation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Genes, Duplicate*
  • Mice / genetics*
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Phenotype