Phylogeny of prokaryotes: does it exist and why should we care?

Res Microbiol. 2009 Sep;160(7):513-21. doi: 10.1016/j.resmic.2009.07.006. Epub 2009 Jul 23.


Understanding microbial evolution is essential for gathering information on the most ancient events in the history of Life on our planet. Nevertheless, the idea that it is impossible to reconstruct the evolutionary history of prokaryotes because of horizontal gene transfer has become very popular. We review this important debate and how it can be solved.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Archaea / classification*
  • Archaea / genetics*
  • Bacteria / classification*
  • Bacteria / genetics*
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Gene Transfer, Horizontal
  • Phylogeny*
  • Prokaryotic Cells